Monday, May 14, 2012

CELEBRATING TEN YEARS OF SHAKESPEARE UNDER THE STARS

Romeo and Juliet
By William Shakespeare

 

 

 

Pride and Prejudice
By Jane Austen
Adapted by Christina Calvit

 

 

WHEN: June 8-July 29, 2012 in repertory; Thursday-Saturday at 8 PM, Sunday at 6 PM
WHERE
: Patapsco Female Institute Historic Park, 3691 Sarah’s Lane, Ellicott City
TICKETS: $15-$36 (Children under 18 FREE)
Tickets can be purchased online through the
website or call 410.313.8661

Starting June 8th, the noble Capulet and Montague families will feud on the outdoor stage for a two-month run of Romeo and Juliet. In this production, directed by CSC’s Resident Artist Jenny Leopold, the beauty of Renaissance Italy meets the excitement of performance poetry, offering a fresh take on the most beloved tale of tragic love. International award-winning Slam poet Gayle Danley worked with the Romeo and Juliet cast, encouraging them to bring the immediacy, raw emotion, and honesty of her style into their performances, and thereby helping them discover the power of Shakespeare’s gorgeous words. “It’s been great fun working with Gayle Danley—she’s allowed us all to see Shakespeare’s classic love story in a fresh way, reinforcing the timeless aspect of this beautiful tragedy,” says Director Jenny Leopold. CSC’s characteristically exciting stage combat and sword-fighting will mirror the intensity of the language. 

Pride and Prejudice will join the performance roster for Chesapeake-Shakespeare-Company-in-the-Ruins on Friday, June 22nd.  Jane Austen’s beloved novel comes to the stage with its witty dialogue, unforgettable characters and brilliant romance intact as Miss Elizabeth Bennet matches wits with the haughty Mr. Darcy. International theater artist Isabelle Anderson returns (she directed CSC’s award-winning Dog in the Manger) to direct this production. This acclaimed adaptation from playwright Christina Calvit, performed at the Stratford Festival in Canada, neatly marries Jane Austen’s elegant, comic language to brisk pacing and dramatic tension.  “I am particularly excited to bring such a large number of complex and wittily drawn female characters to the PFI stage,” says CSC Managing Director Lesley Malin. “Shakespeare writes wonderful (but far fewer) women’s roles, and it’s a real joy to have women and women’s concerns be the central focus of one of our Ruins productions.”

Audiences will enjoy watching familiar faces from CSC’s acting company tackle two roles this summer including: Julian Elijah Martinez (Romeo/Mr. Wickham), Jose Guzman (Friar Lawrence/Mr. Collins), Molly Moores (Lady Capulet/Lady Catherine de Bourgh), and Jamie Jager (Paris/Bingley).   Chesapeake Shakespeare is delighted to welcome newcomers Rachael Jacobs (Juliet/Lydia), Blythe Coons (Mercutio/Elizabeth) and Adam Sheaffer (Benvolio/Mr. Darcy) to the CSC stage.

As in the previous eight seasons, all children under 18 are admitted free when accompanied by a paying adult, thanks to this year’s generous support of The Columbia Foundation, The Allegis Group (which has been a sponsor for all eight years), and M&T Bank.

Adding to the festivities at the park, Chesapeake Shakespeare Company In-The-Ruins features pre-show entertainment—The Show Before The Show— that includes musicians, spoken word poets, costume booths, period games and dances, and stage combat demonstrations to engage those that arrive early to enjoy the sights and sounds at the Patapsco Female Institute Historic Park. The gates open 90 minutes before show time for picnicking.

The summer season features other special events and activities, including:

  • Free admission for all children under 18 (limit—2 children per 1 paying adult)
  • Free admission for all active military
  • Family Friendly Sundays with interactive activities especially designed for children such as face-painting, story-telling and maypole-dancing.
  • Poetry Out Loud Weekend June 15-17, featuring poets, readings and opportunities for audiences to create and perform their own poetry.
  • Jane Austen Weekend from June 22-24, featuring period games, dances and a panel from the Jane Austen Society of Maryland.
  • Fun Formal Fridays, where couples can rent a private candlelit table

(Top: Julian Elijah Martinez and Rachael Jacobs in Romeo and Juliet)
(Bottom: Adam Sheaffer and Blythe Coons in Pride and Prejudice)

Photographs by Teresa Castracane