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Durham University Classical Theatre’s excitng gothic retelling of Shakespeare’s First Folio Morality Play

Measure for Measure follows the provocative story of a sister’s desperate attempt to save her brother in vice-ridden Vienna. 

Families of secondary school pupils have the chance to bring the kids along free to this gothic retelling of one of Shakespeare’s most enigmatic and mercurial plays for the price of an adult ticket. Audiences can look forward to bold costuming, vibrant sets, and complex drama presented by premier company Durham University Classical Theatre (DUCT).  

DUCT specialises in staging shows written more than 100 years ago and to making sure theatre is accessible for all, and its annual Shakespeare performance is not one to be missed. The company sold out its production of Twelfth Night last year to rave 5-star reviews, and their performance in December of The Rivals was similarly received.


Measure for Measure tackles questions of justice versus mercy, lust versus restraint, and power versus truth. It asks what power women can have in a world dominated by men, facing some challenging issues head on.


Ellen Olley, theatre coordinator at Durham University comments: “We want to create a space in classical theatre where everyone feels welcome. Shakespeare is such a vital part of our artistic culture in this country, and we want to provide opportunities for anyone to come along and see the classics brought to life with as much passion and joy as we can muster. 


Measure for Measure is one of Shakespeare’s lesser-performed works, which is a shame, as its twists and turns and vibrant cast of characters means that it matches up to the playwright’s better-known and loved work. Our students are working hard to bring this classic tale to life in a way that offers everyone a chance to experience this story in a new and exciting way.” 

Measure for Measure opens at The Sir Thomas Allen Assembly Rooms Theatre on Wednesday 13 March, running until Friday 15 March, with all performances starting at 7.30 pm. As there is reference to themes of sexual assault and death, recommended age is teens from 13 and up.  Tickets are £7.50 Standard, £6.50 Concessions, and free for under-16s. Tickets are bookable in advance at


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