Tony Award winners Brent Carver and Chuck Cooper have joined the cast of the David Leaveaux-helmed Broadway revival of Romeo and Juliet, which will premeire in a new interracial production in late August at the Richard Rodgers Theatre.
Carver (Kiss of the Spider Woman, Parade) will portray Friar Laurence, with Cooper (The Life; Caroline, or Change) as Lord Capulet. Cooper replaces the previously announced Joe Morton, who bowed out of the revival due to scheduling conflicts.
As previously reported, Orlando Bloom ("The Lord of the Rings") and Tony Award nominee Condola Rashad (Stick Fly, The Trip to Bountiful) star as the central pair of young lovers doomed by intolerance. The production has been conceived with the Capulets as an all-black family and the Montagues as an all-white household.
Romeo and Juliet will begin previews Aug. 14 towards a Sept. 19 opening night. Leveaux has staged Arcadia, Cyrano de Bergerac, Nine, The Glass Menagerie and Jumpers on Broadway, among others.
In addition to Bloom as Romeo and Rashad as Juliet, the production also features the previously announced Tony Award nominee Jayne Houdyshell (Follies, Dead Accounts) as the Nurse.
According to producers, "In this new production, the members of the Montague household will be white, and the blood relatives of the Capulet family will be black. While race defines the family lineages, the original cause of the ‘ancient quarrel’, passed down by successive generations to their young, has been lost to time. Shakespeare’s dramatization of the original poem sets the two young lovers in a context of prejudice, authoritarian parents, and a never ending cycle of ‘revenge.’ Against this background, the strength of their love changes the world."
Producers have also announced that 100 tickets per performance will be set aside at $20 for purchase by students and educators.
For tickets visit Ticketmaster.com.