When considering a production of a classic war horse like Shakespeare’s “Romeo and Juliet,” there are basically two options for a director:
A.) Hew closely to the original and hope that the passion that you bring to it makes it stand out
B.) Update the material in an attempt to reach out to a contemporary audience
At Russell Sage College’s Schacht Fine Arts Center, the New York State Theatre Institute is currently presenting a “Romeo and Juliet” that clearly takes the tact of Plan B by setting the play in modern-day Iraq.
Ambitious? Yes. And conceptually intriguing, too. The problem is that it doesn’t go far enough…