Rupert Goold's hectic production mixed modern dress and period costumes, as it fizzed with sex, death, fire and violence.

A modern-dressed laughing young woman starts to undress a young man
Impatient lovers: Juliet (Mariah Gale) and Romeo (Sam Troughton), 2010, Courtyard Theatre
Photo by Ellie Kurttz © RSC Browse and license our images


Goold’s exhilarating production had a memorable opening as a hoodie-wearing Romeo (Sam Troughton) wandered into a dimly-lit church listening to his audio guide, relaying the ‘Fair Verona’ prologue. This was followed by Elizabethan-dressed Montagues and Capulets engaged in a bloody brawl, against a background of fire and smoke.


After opening at the Courtyard Theatre in March 2010 and touring to Newcastle upon Tyne and London, the production returned to Stratford-upon-Avon the following year.  In March 2011 Sam Troughton (Romeo) and Mariah Gale (Juliet) performed the balcony scene for our Patron, Her Majesty the Queen, as part of the opening ceremony for the newly transformed Royal Shakespeare Theatre.


An energetic Romeo (Sam Troughton) sprinted into the stalls and rushed up the steps, to flirt with a playful Juliet (Mariah Gale). The lovers' modern clothes contrasted with the period costume worn by the rest of the company, emphasising their emotional isolation and the timelessness of their love.


The following videos include stage footage of Sam Troughton (Romeo) and Mariah Gale (Juliet) performing the balcony scene (Act 2 Scene 2) in Goold's 2010 production, described by Dominic Maxwell as "so fresh it might never have been played before" The Times, 3 December 2010.

Production and rehearsal photos 

Galleries of images showing the play in rehearsal and performance, featuring Sam Troughton, Mariah Gale and Jonjo O'Neill.


Goold's Romeo and Juliet was also performed as part of our 2011 New York residency. A 44-member ensemble performed five Shakespeare plays chosen from the 2009 and 2010 repertoire over a six week period at New York's Park Avenue Armory as part of Lincoln Center Festival 2011.

Performances took place in the Scarlet & Gray Theatre, a full-scale replica of the Royal Shakespeare Theatre, specially built by the our theatre technicians and constructed in Park Avenue Armory's Wade Thompson Drill Hall.

The interior entrance to the Wade Thompson Drill Hall, New York, flanked by stairways

 The exterior of a red hexagonal structure with stairways leading to entrances


Tom Scutt's design for the production was simple but powerful and enhanced by Howard Harrison's evocatively subdued lighting. Scutt and director Rupert Goold had a clear concept for the production:

We conceived this as the story of two normal people, modern everyman characters who are martyred in their own Elizabethan story. I enjoyed using the symmetry and relative sparseness of the space to make some kind of epic, spiritual gesture. We tried placing Romeo and Juliet’s version of the stations of the cross around the stage, as if in a church erected to their memory.” Designs fit for Kanye and a future king – the stage worlds of Tom Scutt (Guardian website).

Group of masked revellers in period dress with a modern young couple holding hands at the centre, posed like a station of the cross


  • In the following galleries, you can see examples of Tom Scutt's costume and set designs, including small scale models of the sets (model boxes), for the 2010 production of Romeo and Juliet.
  • You can also discover more about Tom Scutt's work in the article ‘Design isn’t about drawing, but talking’ (The Stage website).
Theatrical poster for Romeo and Juliet 2010 showing modern-dressed young man on left of red play title and young woman on right , facing each other



Courtyard Theatre

Joseph Arkley - Tybalt

David Carr - Escalus

Noma Dumezweni - Nurse

Dyfan Dwyfor - Peter

Christine Entwisle - Lady Capulet

Mariah Gale - Juliet

Gruffudd Glyn - Balthasar

James Howard - Paris

Richard Katz - Lord Capulet

Debbie Korley - Lady

Forbes Masson - Friar Laurence

Jonjo O'Neill - Mercutio

Dharmesh Patel - Gregory

Peter Peverley - Friar John/Abraham/Watchman

Patrick Romer - Cousin Capulet/Apothecary/Constable

David Rubin - Lord Montague

Oliver Ryan - Benvolio

Simone Saunders - Lady Montague

James Traherne - Sampson/Watchman

Sam Troughton - Romeo

Kirsty Woodward - Lady




Director – Rupert Goold

Designer - Tom Scutt

Lighting designer - Howard Harrison

Music and Sound - Adam Cork

Video and Projections - Lorna Heavey

Choreography - Georgina Lamb

Fight arranger - Terry King


The RSC's archive is held at the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust. You can visit the Library and Archives there to look at production related information, including photos, videos of shows and stage management documents:

Shakespeare Centre Library and Archive homepage

You can search the RSC catalogue here: 

RSC performance database

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