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Kelvin Roston Jr. Embodies Another King in Oedipus Rex

Kelvin Roston Jr. as Oedipus RexFresh off his critically-acclaimed turn as Hedley in King Hedley II, Kelvin Roston Jr. will bring another “king” to life in Sophocles’ Oedipus Rex. Oedipus Rex is the first production in Court’s Oedipus Trilogy, tracing Sophocles’ themes and characters over the course of three productions (Oedipus Rex; The Gospel at Colonus; Antigone) with an overlapping team of actors and artists. In Oedipus Rex, Roston will have the opportunity to tackle one of the most iconic roles in classic drama: King Oedipus.

Audiences who enjoyed King Hedley II will find exciting parallels in Sophocles’ seminal tragedy. The Chicago Tribune describes Wilson’s take on life in Pittsburgh in the 1980s as a Greek tragedy in and of itself. Jones writes that “the title character in Hedley II is a desperate mix of passion, determination and resentment. He’s an Oedipus-like character trapped in a cycle play of his own, desperately trying to grow some new roots and escape but ultimately thwarted not just by the previous generations of his own family but by the America whence his ancestors were brought on fear of violent death.” Oedipus Rex puts similar issues of fate, free will, and identity on powerful display in a dauntless translation by Court’s founding artistic director, Nicholas Rudall.

Oedipus TrilogyIn Oedipus Rex, Kelvin Roston, Jr. will further explore the Greek undercurrents he began to tap into in King Hedley II, again captivating audiences with raw emotion and sheer force of will. As Chris Jones writes in the Chicago Tribune, “Roston has a growing reputation in Chicago and New York; he’s a deeply empathetic actor whose take on King is completely different from what I have seen before.” Kelvin will assuredly provide this same insight and intensity in his performance as Oedipus, making Oedipus Rex and the remainder of The Oedipus Trilogy the theatrical event of the season.


Oedipus Rex begins November 7 | Tickets and Information

Photo by of Kelvin Roston Jr. by Joe Mazza.

Posted on September 23, 2019 in Productions, Theatre News

1 response on “Kelvin Roston Jr. Embodies Another King in Oedipus Rex”

  1. Kristian Chanin Crawford says:

    My name is Kristian Chanin Crawford. I am a retired thespian from the late 80’s and early 90’s who seduced many unwitting critics with my stage shenanigans, including Richard Christiansen who once said of my Coach Sam performance in ETA’s “The Last Season” that I was “an actor of aristocratic bearing reminiscent of the late Adolf Caesar”. I was pleased to attend last night’s performance of “Oedipus Rex”. The feelings of nostalgia it inspired have invoked just a few unsolicited but playful remarks: Master Donahue, I do not recall ever a time that a stage actor was so meaningfully communicative with his toes, I doubt that Peter O’Toole ever mastered that one. Had Teiresias had been as mute as he was blind, the audience still would have listened…those talking feet! Majestic execution Master Rolston, as I told you, breathe young man, swallow deep gulps of air and elongate your vowels, this will slow your delivery down just enough that we’ll hear each and every thrilling threat you spew, then pause occasionally during the period of revelation so we can feel the depth of your reflection, use inflection instead of volume, inflect up at the end of each line to give yourself a more boastful texture and you will save your voice for the very end. Wendy Robie, what a vivacious shepherd you are! Who would have known that subtlety could be played so seductively? Master Kane, I love articulation, I see you do too. Every jot and tittle. Perhaps the Jefferson Committee will one day bronze that agile tongue of yours and make that the award sculpture. (Smile). Ah, Master Smith, gospel harmony was never so well used in a play than it was last night! I guess that compliment must be shared with the Director. Bless you, Mr. Newell. My, my, Madame Firkins costuming must become a design label on 5th Avenue! Marvelous! Play on you rogues, you rustics, you clowns and charmers all! Hurray!

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