McCraney, who is an artistic associate at London's RSC, has been shaping and workshopping this "radical edit" of Antony and Cleopatra during the past year. It will premiere at the RSC's Stratford-upon-Avon home in November 2013, move to GableStage in early January 2014 and play The Public in New York City in late January 2014.
Now set in the New World, the Public states that McCraney's approach includes "stripping down the text, reordering the scene structure and relocating the play." It will feature a mix of American and English actors.
Antony and Cleopatra, "will be set in the late 1700s against the backdrop of Saint-Domingue, on the eve of the Haitian Revolution against the French, bringing to light vivid historical parallels with the story of Antony and Cleopatra."
"Taking this equal parts tragedy equal parts history and setting it in the budding racial politics of the New World, a history ripe with pirating and battles over loyalty, we heighten the forbidden and passionate love affair between the conqueror, Antony, and colonized, Cleopatra," McCraney said in a statement.