Paradise, the playscript by lyricist, novelist, poet and playwright Kae Tempest is a potent and dynamic reimagining of the Greek classic Philoctetes by Sophocles. Once comrades, now enemies after Odysseus abandoned Philoctetes to suffer a terrible wound alone, Odysseus is prepared to use any means necessary to get the shell-shocked Philoctetes back to the front and win the Trojan war.
The National Theatre production will be directed by Ian Rickson with Lesley Sharp leading a large ensemble all-woman cast.
Kae Tempest is now widely acknowledged as a revolutionary force in contemporary British poetry, music and drama; they continue to expand the range of their work with a new version of Sophocles’ Philoctetes in a bold new translation. Like Brand New Ancients before it, Paradise shows Tempest’s gift for lending the old tales an immediate contemporary relevance – and will find this timeless story a wide new audience.