In the opening monologue, there is an impassioned plea for peace rather than war, and the prologue asks the question of whether life is a tragedy or a comedy. As the action unfolds, both forms are showcased, including hilarious moments of pure mayhem driven by Romeo’s chaotic love life, contrasted with the tragic consequences of violent rivalries between neighboring kingdoms. The play is also notable for the changing role of women within the societies of the different time periods, as they ascend to leadership, and how the actions of one generation opens doors for the next.
The Montagues and Capulets is an alternative retelling of Romeo and Juliet, presented at the fictional Congress of Verona in 1914. Empress Alexandra has invited the crowned heads of Europe to meet, to agree on a treaty that will avoid a war that all have come to view as inevitable. On the opening night, she presents what she says is the true story of Romeo and Juliet. The play within a play takes many of the
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