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Titus Andronicus Musicus

Titus Andronicus

The Players’ Ring
105 Marcy St.
Portsmouth, NH 03801
United States

May 25 – June 17, 2018
By William Shakespeare
Directed by Billy Butler
Produced by Bitter Pill

“O cruel, irreligious piety!”

Bitter Pill presents William Shakespeare’s most violent and bloodiest play Titus Andronicus.

After a decade of war with the Goths, Titus Andronicus returns to a leaderless Rome with his prisoners, the Queen of the Goths and her sons. To appease the ghosts of his twenty-one sons lost in the war, he executes her eldest son and (of course) she vows revenge. He then refuses to accept the title of emperor of Rome which initiates a terrible cycle of cruelty, vengeance, and tragedy. Rome slips into depravity and decay and the mighty fall.

Demetrius: Villain, what hast thou done?
Aaron: That which thou canst not undo.
Chiron: Thou hast undone our mother.
Aaron: Villain, I have done thy mother.

Titus Andronicus is a grotesquely, ridiculous, abomination of a play – critics through the ages have said the same about the writing. Yet, it was very popular in his time and there has never been an equal. It covers the gambit of family, politics, and society in the most cruel and crude Shakespearian way. That said, we at Bitter Pill will bring it to you with our own little twist – original music, lots of makeup, tricks and treats, theatricalness, weirdness, pie, and blood – oh, yes, there will be blood!

21 of Titus’s sons are killed in a battle before the play starts
1 human sacrifice
4 Titus’s children die during the play
4 Goths killed
6 Romans killed
10 named characters die
1 character buried alive
7 limps lopped off
2 characters baked into a pie
…and there is 1 act of cannibalism

Bitter Pill is a band of noir vaudevillians comprised of musicians, singers, circusers, artists, actors, and awkwards. Lead by Billy Butler, the primary focus is on original live performances, but we also present classic and contemporary works re-imagined with our own twisted point of view. The Bitter Pill aesthetic is in the spirit of what Amanda Palmer coined as, ‘Brechtian punk cabaret’. We mostly present theatre and music but we have been known to try just about anything.

Fridays and Saturdays at 8:00 p.m., Sundays at 3 p.m.