Tag Archives | William Shakespeare

Gregg Henry in the Public Theater's production of Julius Caesar. Photo by Joan Marcus.

Opinion: ‘Julius Caesar, William Shakespeare, and the Fine Art of Dissent’

It’s a classic art-imitating-life-imitating-art situation: to make a production relevant, the director decks out the cast in modern dress to create the illusion that Shakespeare was writing about our time. Then, to heighten the illusion, he scatters actors throughout the audience to ‘stage’ a demonstration—only to find the cast shouted down by real protestors, who […]

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Madalyn St. John.

Review: ‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream’ at Hedgerow Theatre

“The course of true love never did run smooth.” And in the case of A Midsummer Night’s Dream, it hits every bump in the road! One of Shakespeare’s most popular comedies, Midsummer follows the ever-escalating complications surrounding the marriage of Theseus, Duke of Athens, to Hippolyta, Queen of the Amazons. Throw in four young lovers (Lysander, […]

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Jessica Fields and Rodney Landis.

Review: ‘The Taming of the Shrew’ at Exclamation Theater

The Taming of the Shrew is one of Shakespeare’s most controversial plays, one that has spurred argument and discord for over 400 years. Is the play as misogynistic as it often appears, or is its theme just a matter of interpretation? Exclamation Theater’s new production won’t settle any arguments, and it may not win over […]

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West Side Story at The Media Theatre.

Review: ‘West Side Story’ at The Media Theatre

Earlier this season, The Media Theatre presented Shakespeare’s classic Romeo & Juliet. Now they’re concluding their 2016-2017 season with a production of West Side Story, the musical that put a 20th Century spin on the Bard’s story and became a masterwork in its own right. Set in New York’s Upper West Side in the mid-1950s, West […]

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Mattie Hawkinson. Photo by Shawn May.

Review: ‘The Broken Heart’ at Quintessence Theatre Group

It’s unlikely you will be familiar with John Ford’s The Broken Heart. Like most early 17th century playwrights not named Shakespeare, Ford’s works are rarely performed: he’s known almost exclusively for ’Tis Pity She’s a Whore. The Broken Heart was not performed between Ford’s time and 1962, when Laurence Olivier included it in the Chichester Festival’s season. […]

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Christopher Garofalo, John Williams, Lee Cortopassi and Ashton Carter. Photo by Shawn May.

Review: ‘Love’s Labor’s Lost’ at Quintessence Theatre Group

Quintessence Theatre Group brings William Shakespeare’s Love’s Labor’s Lost, as directed by Alexander Burns, vibrantly to life with spectacular staging, scintillating costumes and a sparkling cast. The King of Navarre, Ferdinand (Lee Cortopassi), has convinced his complement of Lords – Berowne (John Williams), Longaville (Ashton Carter) and Dumaine (Christopher Garofalo) – to swear off women […]

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Mary Lee Bednarek and Robert Lyons. Photo by Mark Garvin.

Review: ‘Coriolanus’ at Lantern Theater

Coriolanus is one of Shakespeare’s least-performed plays – probably because it doesn’t fit easily into any of the standard Shakespearean categories. It’s a tragedy, but one without the epic sweep of Othello, Hamlet or Macbeth. Those shows earned their fame by grappling with huge issues and significant figures; Coriolanus deals more with the concerns of the […]

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From PlayPenn to Lincoln Center: A Conversation about ‘Oslo’ with Paul Meshejian and J.T. Rogers

Following its development in 2015 at PlayPenn — the respected thirteen-year-old Philadelphia-based artist-driven organization dedicated to supporting and fostering new work — playwright J.T. Rogers’ Oslo is Broadway bound, scheduled to begin previews at Lincoln Center’s Vivian Beaumont Theater on March 23. The latest play by the award-winning writer, whose previous works include Madagascar (2004) and […]

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Lexi Gwynn and Brandon O'Rourke. Photo by Maura McConnell.

Review: ‘Romeo & Juliet’ at The Media Theatre

“Two households, both alike in dignity In fair Verona, where we lay our scene From ancient grudge break to new mutiny Where civil blood makes civil hands unclean….” Delaware County’s Media Theatre continues its current season with a production of William Shakespeare’s Romeo & Juliet. Playing in the company’s State Street venue through February 19th, […]

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Review: ‘All’s Well That Ends Well’ at the Philadelphia Artists’ Collective

Director Dan Hodge strikes a fine balance between comedy and drama in the Philadelphia Artists’ Collective’s presentation of All’s Well That Ends Well. In keeping with the sardonic tone of Shakespeare’s problem play, the astute production captures both its acerbic wit and its cynical view of sex and relationships. Staged in-the-round at Broad Street Ministry, […]

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Dangereuse: She Will Rock You: ‘TAME.’ at WSC Avant Bard

One of Shakespeare’s greatest gifts is the inspiration he offers to other artists. In the case of Tame., playwright Jonelle Walker has captured the essence of Shakespeare’s Kate in The Taming of the Shrew; wild, uncontrollable and ultimately fascinating. This is the key to the success of WSC Avant Bard’s dynamic production. “They call me […]

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Review: ‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream’ at Howard University

From the moment the actors appear, the stage becomes a non-stop whirl of color and movement. Howard University’s production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream is set in what is meant to be modern-day New Orleans, but through the music—part 1930s Swing, part 2016 dance club—, the glittering costumes, and the carnival masks whose glowing eyes […]

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