Theatre for a New Audience kicks off its 2018–2019 season September 9 with the U.S. premiere of The Emperor starring Kathryn Hunter. Colin Teevan‘s adaptation of Ryszard Kapuściński‘s celebrated and controversial 1978 book of the same title is a parable about power set at the downfall of Ethiopian emperor Haile Selassie.
In The Emperor, Hunter portrays ten of Selassie's male servants, among them his pillow-bearer, purse-bearer, and dog-urine wiper, creating complex human portraits.
Directed by Walter Meierjohann, the show is a co-production from the Young Vic, HOME & Les Théâtres de la Ville de Luxembourg. Hunter is reprising her performance from the international productions, and is joined onstage by Ethiopian musician Temesgen Zeleke.
Performances continue through September 30 at Theatre for a New Audience at Polonsky Shakespeare Center in Brooklyn.