Crime & Punishment

by fyodor dostoyevsky

Rodion Raskolnikov, a former student, spends his days up in a filthy fifth-storey room in St Petersburg plotting the murder of an old pawn-broker woman. He has convinced himself that he is a rare kind of Superman (in the Nietzschen sense), a select individual born with a unique right to commit any manner of crime for the betterment of Humanity. Withdrawn from friends, family and the future he was working towards, he has become increasingly lost in his head and is no longer able to perceive clear boundaries between dreams and reality.

Half mad, he commits the crime, with awful consequences – consequences he finds himself unable to step beyond. To his surprise, the murder(s) turns out to be a violation of his inner sense of moral justice. Hope of redemption lies with the shrewd police inspector Porfiry Petrovich, the prostitute, Sonya, his friend Razumikhin and his sister, Dounia. Unable to justify the murder of ‘louses’, Raskolnikov must find a way to reconnect with others and begin the difficult journey out of spiritual bankruptcy through denial, confession, self-renunciation and, ultimately, redemption.

 

We performed stage adaptations of C&P in London in 2008 and 2010, making the show into a low-budget feature in 2015 with just three actors.

Filming took place in the dustiest garret you could possibly imagine, which was just perfect! You can watch the whole film on our YouTube Channel.

"Thank you for the wonderful show that we really enjoyed. It was really interesting staging of the book and I liked a lot that you decided not to modernise the story too much but rather stay with Dostoevsky’s story. I was surprised how close it was to my reading as well, as most of the philosophical questions highlighted in the play are the ones that I remember very clearly from the book. It was so interesting to listen to it all in English with various English accents and coming from non-Russian people who looked so Russian on the stage. I was really impressed by the acting, the ability to show such different characters within a few seconds span. All the characters were so psychologically deep and real and believable and still very lovely to look at and listen to and some even really amusing."

Alsu Sworder, St Petersburg