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Androcles and the Lion

An Old Fable Renovated

OVERVIEW

  • Playwright

    George Bernard (GB) Shaw 

  • Setting

    Rome, some time after the death of Christ.

  • Synopsis

    "In this play I have represented one of the Roman persecutions of the early Christians, not as the conflict of a false theology with the true, but, as what all such persecutions essentially are, an attempt to suppress the propaganda that seemed to threaten the interests involved in the established law and order, organized and maintained in the name of religion and justice by politicians." (Preface, 1912) Shaws's retelling of the well-known tale of Androcles, a slave who is saved by the mercy of a lion.

  • Play Type

    Plays General

  • Number Of Acts

    Full-Length

  • Cast Size Male

    15

  • Cast Size Female

    2

ORIGINAL PRODUCTION

  • Date of First Production

    01 September 1913

  • Production Notes

    'Androcles and the Lion' was first performed, in German, at the Kleines Theater in Berlin on the 25th of November 1912. The listing here refers to the play's first English-language performance.

  • Producer

  • Original Venue

  • Venue Notes

    First presented in English at St James' Theatre, London.

Original Cast  
Ferrovius Alfred Brydone
Lentulus Donald Calthrop
Call Boy Neville Gartside
Megaera Clare Greet
Androcles O.P. Heggie
Editor Herbert Hewetson
Menagerie Keeper Balliol Holloway
Slave Driver Ralph Hutton
Secutor Allan Jeayes
Lavinia Lillah McCarthy
Centurion H.O. Nicholson
Spintho J.F. Outram
Metellus Hesketh Pearson
Emperor Leon Quartermaine
Lion Edward Sillward
Retiarius J.B. Turnbull
Captain Ben Webster
Production Team  
Director Harley Granville-Barker

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