Buy Tickets From the 2020-2021 Season: Othello Playing February 04, 2021 to February 28, 2021

Charlie Thomas as Othello, Sean Kelley as Iago, Patty de la Garza as Desdemona (Photo by Daniel Parvis)

A general, his wife, and his ensign walk into a room...only one survives! Find out who in Shakespeare’s tale of race, romance, reputation, and revenge. This production, filmed on The Shakespeare Tavern Playhouse stage with nine actors during the scourge of the pandemic, shows just how far Iago will go to take that which he feels he is rightfully entitled. Betrayal and deceit abound as he burns down everything to destroy the world of his “friend," Othello. Richard III, eat your heart out!

Filmed on The Shakespeare Tavern Playhouse Stage November 2020
Available to watch February 4-28, 2021
Link expires one month after purchase
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Is Othello appropriate for my child/student? Click here. Spoilers ahead.

Probably Not! Please read the information below in order to make that decision for your family or classroom.

Thematic Elements: Racism, racist language and undertones pervade this story.

Adult Content Advisory: One character is a paid sex worker from the era of the play and behaves and speaks accordingly. Two female characters are accused of adultery. Desdemona removes clothing onstage but does not appear full or partially nude at any point. Othello appears shirtless throughout the play. No additional language is added from Shakespeare's original text.

Violence Advisory: Multiple characters are stabbed to death or seriously wounded with both daggers and swords. One character is suffocated to death. One character completes suicide onstage. Domestic violence and abuse is committed against two married, female characters. All violent moments take place onstage.

Language Advisory: Hell, whore, damned, damn and sexually descriptive dialogue between male characters referring to female characters.

How to purchase the performance

To purchase, simply click on the Buy Tickets icon at the top of the page. You will be taken to Vimeo where you will enter your payment information.  If you are renting, your link will be available for 30 days. You can watch as many times as you like in those 30 days.

When picking your price please consider the number of people who might be watching with you.

Please purchase only one ticket per household.

Rental Price for a single household is $20. Link is good for 30 days.

Group price for 10 or more viewers or the price if you want to download the performance to keep is $100.

To use ASC account credit, email , you’ll be sent a promo code

If you are an Educator who wants to show the performance to your students, please email

Read the Plot Synopsis

From The Pocket Companion to Shakespeare’s Plays by J C Trewin

Iago, ensign to the Moorish general Othello, in the service of the Venetian republic, is a man inwardly malevolent and envious, outwardly an honest soldier. Resolved, for his own reasons, to revenge himself upon Othello, he begins one midnight in Venice by getting Roderigo – Desdemona’s foolish suitor – to rouse her father with the news that Othello has stolen her. Brabantio at once accuses Othello at the Duke’s hastily convened council which is considering a threatened Turkish attack on Cyprus; but the Moor’s tale of his wooing, and Desdemona’s testimony, persuade all the senators except Brabantio himself. Othello is dispatched to govern Cyprus with his new lieutenant Cassio (of whom Iago is feverishly jealous), Desdemona following them with Iago and his wife Emilia.
The Turkish fleet has been dispersed in a tempest by the time the travelers reach Cyprus (Roderigo, still pursing Desdemona, is also there). On a night of celebration Cassio, who at Iago’s prompting has drunk unwisely, is involved in a brawl and disgraced. At Iago’s suggestion Cassio implores Desdemona to plead his cause; Othello, already distressed by Iago’s hints at infidelity, grows progressively inflamed. Iago makes diabolical
play with a handkerchief (Othello’s gift) that Desdemona has dropped and that he ensures Cassio will unwittingly find. When Othello is overwhelmed by the falsehood that Desdemona is untrue, Iago arranges other “proof”, Othello swears to kill her; and envoys from Venice, who have come to recall him, leaving Cassio as governor, are
horrified to see him strike his wife. Iago urges Roderigo to murder Cassio, and when the effort fails, stabs the dupe to death. Othello smothers Desdemona in her bed; Emilia, rousing the citadel, tells the truth about Iago, confirmed when in desperation he kills her. Whereupon Othello stabs himself, Iago is borne off to torture and Cassio rules in Cyprus.

Director's Notes

Directed by O'Neil Delapenha

Director's Bio

I am proud and altogether humbled to be the first black artist to direct a Main Stage production in The Atlanta Shakespeare Company’s history. I have been a lover of Shakespeare’s works for the majority of my life, in fact my very first play was a production of Hamlet in the 5th grade. I played Polonius and spray painted my hair white to make myself look old. From those humble beginnings, I studied and performed Shakespeare in high school and college, until finding my current professional home in Atlanta and at The Tavern. My time in the hallowed walls of The Tavern has granted me numerous acting, teaching, learning, and even directing opportunities. I have co-directed two "Shakespeare Intensive for Teens” productions (The Tempest & Macbeth), along with several camp and residency performances. Outside of The Tavern, I have worked with Flagstaff Shakespeare Festival, based in Arizona and Shakespeare & Company based in Massachusetts. I also have to show love to Shakespeare on Draught a company run by me and my talented friends. Here I have directed/assistant directed numerous shows, including Titus Andronicus and Romeo and Juliet. I would like to thank Jeff Watkins and Kati Grace Brown for giving me this opportunity and my talented cast for sharing their gifts with me.

Director's Notes

Othello has always been one of my favorite titles in The Bard’s canon. A play powered by tremendously complex characters, primal motives, and some of the most savage gaslighting seen in all of literature. All of these are just as prevalent and visceral in the world today--the world we like to think of as so much more enlightened and educated than in Shakespeare’s time.

What is different from Shakespeare’s era is that we as a society have learned from the mistakes of the past. I talk specifically of race and diversity on stage, or rather the lack thereof. I wanted a cast that was just as layered and multifaceted as the story we needed to tell. A production in which Othello was the only person of color is not something I wanted to present, nor thought it necessary. If you disagree, I respect your difference of opinion and recommend you seek out a more “homogeneous” production elsewhere.

Going into this project, I knew I would have to think as both a film director and a stage director because this show would blend both worlds. I was very inspired by the storytelling in my favorite musical, Hamilton. The story is about Alexander Hamilton, but much of it is told from the perspective of Aaron Burr, who serves as narrator. I wanted to highlight the direct similarity in Othello, which I feel is about Othello as told from the perspective of Iago. To help achieve this, we leaned hard into the Original Practice that the Atlanta Shakespeare Company is known for, but the camera lens had to serve as the eyes of our audience. Iago takes them on an inside journey through his world of deceit and lies, forcing our viewers to be his silent accomplices. My hope is that our watchers are treated to the most intimate viewing of our shows that they have ever felt.

Due to the Covid-19 Pandemic, I viewed the very thought of creating this project as an “Impossible Task”; a term often used by my friend and mentor Michael Toomey, a company member with Shakespeare & Company. We filmed Othello in rep with All’s Well That Ends Well, using the same cast and crew for both shows, all in about the span of two weeks. With such limited time, I wasn’t sure if we could pull it off. But, with each individual putting in countless hours, coming together as a team, and believing in ourselves, I’m proud to say that we did indeed pull off the impossible task. I hope you all enjoy!

Show Information


About two hours total with no intermission

Show Roles

February 4-28, 2021 (Digitally)

Othello - Charlie Thomas
Iago - Sean Kelley
Desdemona - Patty de la Garza
Emilia/ Messenger - Mary Ruth Ralston
Roderigo - Nick Faircloth
Cassio - J.L. Reed
Brabantio/Montano - Chris Hecke
Duke of Venice/Lodovico - Destiny Freeman
Senator/Bianca - Kati Grace Brown

Production Crew:
Film Production Company - Up the Hills
Lighting Designer - Mary Ruth Ralston
Fight Choreographer - Sean Kelley
Intimacy Choreographer - Kati Grace Brown
Original Costumes created by Anné Carole Butler
Costume Coordination by Kati Grace Brown and Laura Cole
Original music by Mary Ruth Ralston and Patty de la Garza
Djembe underscoring performed by Patrick Croce

Show Times
In general, shows at The Shakespeare Tavern Playhouse begin at 7:30pm, except on Sundays, when they begin at 6:30pm.

Bardometer Rating

How difficult is this Shakespearean play to grasp? On a scale of 1 to 10.
What does rating this mean?

These are plays you may have read in high school or college. The plot is fairly uncomplicated, though some of the themes may be dense or dark. These plays may include supernatural elements, straight-forward politics, historical content or religious content. In these plays, there may also be bawdy language and certain adult situations. If we feel a show contains a plethora of Graphic Elizabethan Poetry (or is very bloody/violent/triggering) we will put that disclaimer in the blurb about the show.

Note for all plays: The performers of The Atlanta Shakespeare Company are specially trained to make Shakespeare’s text and intention clear, no matter the plot or the subject matter. They know precisely how to get to the emotional core of each line, each moment, each scene. We promise you will understand everything! Leave the heavy lifting to us!

Additional Information