Blade Runner meets Gotham…A new production of restoration political thriller, Venice Preserved

Actor, writer and director, Prasanna Puwanarajah (well known to TV audiences appearing alongside Suranne Jones in Season 2 of Doctor Foster), directs Thomas Otway’s political thriller Venice Preserved at the Royal Shakespeare Company’s Swan Theatre in Stratford-upon-Avon.

Venice Preserved is a dark masterpiece and breath-taking love story, and this production will   draw on inspirations including Anime, graphic novels and DC Comics. Chosen as one of the best 101 plays ever by The Guardian theatre critic, Michael Billington, the production runs between 24 May – 7 September.

The cast features Les Dennis, making his RSC debut, and Natalie Dew, Michael Grady-Hall, John Hodgkinson and Jodie McNee.

Prasanna has described his production as having a 1980s ‘Restoration Blade Runner’ feel: I’m placing Venice Preserved in a contemporary setting – it’s kind of mid-1980s.  The play has all the noir elements of the dystopian graphic novel or DC Comics. I’m a child of the 80s so these things aren’t really a reach for me, but rather they represent the space in which I grew up, so the play is reaching into that space in me as much as me seeing those things in the play.

“When I first started thinking about this play I was looking at it as a piece essentially of Restoration noir.  By that I mean there is a sense when you read the play of being trapped underground.  The entire thing seems to take place at night.  There’s a kind of pressure cooker thriller vibe to it immediately.”

until 7 Sep 2019
Swan Theatre, Stratford-upon-Avon
To book tickets call 01789 331111 or online at
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