"It's Shakespeare for people who hate Shakespeare created by someone who loves Shakespeare."
Red Octopus Theatre Company presents William Shakespeare's The Taming of the Shrew, April 3rd - 26th, 2015, at the Newport Performing Arts Center.
One of Shakespeare's wildest and most madcap comedies! Bianca, the desirable younger daughter of the very wealthy Baptista Minola, is Padua's most eligible bachelorette. But there's a problem. Baptista won't let anyone marry Bianca until her sharp-tongued older sister, Kate, is married off. Two of Bianca's suitors hatch a plan to persuade a friend to woo and wed the wild Kate. Meanwhile Bianca's suitors disguise themselves as her tutors to gain access to her, while one of their servants disguises himself as his master to arrange a match with Bianca's mother.
It's a hilarious tale of love, money, and misdirection - given a bit of a facelift, courtesy director Darcy Hogan. "If you were to read the play to a wildly imaginative 12 year old in 1987 ... that, in a nutshell, is our production," said Hogan,"It's all the vibrant, colorful stuff a child of the 80's would imagine."
It's no small coincidence that Hogan, herself, first read the play in 1987, at the age of 12. A 30+ year veteran of the stage, she is a huge fan of Shakespeare's work. In fact, she spent four seasons performing with Utah Shakespeare Festival, and took on some of the Bard's most iconic roles on stages throughout Orange County, California.
Hogan has used Shakespeare's original text, trimmed slightly, with a few additions here and there. "It's not an update, not a relocation, and it's not set in the eighties. We've simply breathed new life into what was already one of the Bard's funniest and most accessible comedies," says Hogan,"It's Shakespeare for people who hate Shakespeare, created by someone who loves Shakespeare. But those who are already fans of his work will enjoy it as well."
In fact, Hogan has thrown in some elements just for those well-versed in Shakespeare, including shout-outs to no less than seven of Shakespeare's other plays. Can you spot them all?
The Taming of the Shrew opens Friday, April 3rd and runs the entire month of April (thru Sunday, April 26th) at the Newport Performing Arts Center (777 W. Olive Street in Newport) Shows are Friday and Saturday nights at 7:00pm, and Sundays at 2:00pm, however there is no show on Easter Sunday (April 5th) There is also one Thursday night performance scheduled, at 7:00pm on April 23rd.
Advance tickets are $15 (or $14 for Seniors & Students w/ID.) Tickets at the door on show nights are $16 (or $15 for Seniors & Students w/ID.) Tickets may be purchased online at CoastArts.org, by phone at 541-265-ARTS, or in person at the Newport Performing Arts Center box office (777 W. Olive St, Newport, OR 97365.)
The cast includes Melissa MacDonald (as Kate), Kyle Cooper (as Petruchio), Josh Lawrence (as Lucentio), Miranda Richman (as Bianca), CJ McCarty (as Baptista), Pete Theodore (as Hortensio), Scott Branchfield (as Gremio), Alex Robbins (as Tranio), Ram Papish (as Grumio), Nikki Atkins (as Biondello), Greg O'Neill (as Vincentio), Brian Haggerty (as the Grandfather), Cooper Theodore (as the Child), Bill Terry (as the Pedant), Akia Woods (as the Tailor), Milo Graamans (as Pietro), Cyn Wilkes (as the Mother and Sophia), Betsy Henderson (as Sabrina), River Benison (as Serafina), Quitze Rose (as Sugarpop), Rich Hicks (as Mario), Jeff Lichtman (as Luigi), and Kim Cole (as Francesa)