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Shakespeare & Company Presents Twelfth Night, Directed by Allyn Burrows

(Lenox, MA) - Shakespeare & Company presents William Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night, directed by Company Artistic Director, Allyn Burrows. This classic showcases a rich, affecting, and deeply funny story of longing, love, and laughter which paints Shakespeare at his peak. Performances run from July 2 to August 4th in the Tina Packer Playhouse.


“This production of Twelfth Night, or What You Will unfolds in a mutable landscape of yearning and surprises, set in a dance hall on a boardwalk by the seashore in 1959,” said Director Allyn Burrows. “Ours is a story of what arises from a shipwreck, the madness of love, and that shipwreck called love. Nothing is as it appears where people convene with a longing to connect, even the twins at the center of the action, who in this account are twins of the soul, of a different race. Expectations are tossed in the air and land like so many scattered shells on the shoreline, inviting and impermanent."

Helmed by Burrows who has previously acted in three different productions of Twelfth Night including the mainstage production at Shakespeare & Company in 1991, the cast features Shakespeare & Company veterans Martin Jason Asprey (Antonio/Sea Captain), Steven Barkhimer (Sir Toby Belch), Gregory Boover (Feste), Nigel Gore (Andrew Aguecheek), Deaon Griffin-Pressley (Sebastian), Cloteal L. Horne (Olivia), Ella Loudon (Viola), and Bella Merlin (Maria). The Company also welcomes two newcomers Miles Anderson (Malvolio), with stage appearances in London’s West End and at the Royal Shakespeare Company, and Bryce Michael Wood (Duke Orsino), performing most recently with the Connecticut Repertory Theatre, and the Goodspeed Opera House. The creative team includes Ariel Bock (Voice Coach), Susan Dibble (Movement Director), Cristina Todesco (Set Designer), Govane Lohbauer (Costume Designer), Deb Sullivan (Lighting Designer), Arshan Gailus (Sound Designer and Composer), and Gregory Boover (Music Director).

“Allyn's decision to set this in 1959 really sparked my curiosity,” said Boston-based set designer, Cristina Todesco. “This was a time of transformation and discovery where popular culture began to question norms in society surrounding creativity, art, race and gender identity. So much storytelling is done through song in Twelfth Night and during this time period, popular music became a powerful voice for these questions. For this reason, we decided to set our play in a dancehall in 1959, where song and dance was both a refuge for celebration and immersion but also for exposure and confrontation. The Tina Packer Playhouse inherently possesses so much of what makes an iconic 20th century dancehall so interesting, architecture that facilitates people to see each other and be seen, where people can move easily through and sometimes disappear into crowds and decor.”

"With our delightful music, costumes and dance on Cristina's evocative set, audiences will feel literally plunged into the world of the play," added Burrows.

Tickets for Twelfth Night are available online at shakespeare.org, or by calling Shakespeare & Company’s box office at (413) 637-3353. The Tina Packer Playhouse is air-conditioned and wheelchair accessible. Shakespeare & Company is located at 70 Kemble St. in Lenox, Massachusetts. Twelfth Night is generously sponsored by Dr. Donald and Phoebe L. Giddon.

Additionally, Shakespeare & Company invites audiences to participate in a Free Pre-Show Talk on Tuesday, July 9th at 6:15pm as we provide insight into the plot and characters of the play to enhance your experience. Join Artistic Director Allyn Burrows and cast members for the Director's Panel on Saturday, July 20th at 11am for a discussion of the creative journey of bringing Twelfth Night to the stage. Adult tickets for the Director's Panel are $10 for adults and free for students. For tickets and more information visit shakespeare.org.

The Company’s 2019 Summer Season also includes two outdoor Shakespeare productions, The Taming of the Shrew and The Merry Wives of Windsor, and a special workshop production of Coriolanus; plus 2001 Pulitzer Prize for Drama Finalist The Waverly Gallery by Kenneth Lonergan, The Children by Tony nominee Lucy Kirkwood, The Pulitzer Prize-winning Topdog/Underdog by Suzan-Lori Parks, and Tony Award nominee, Time Stands Still by Donald Margulies.

AT A GLANCE
PRODUCTION: Twelfth Night
PLAYWRIGHT: William Shakespeare
DIRECTOR: Allyn Burrows
VOICE COACH: Ariel Bock
MOVEMENT DIRECTOR: Susan Dibble
SET DESIGNER: Cristina Todesco
COSTUME DESIGNER: Govane Lohbauer
LIGHTING DESIGNER: Deb Sullivan
SOUND DESIGNER & COMPOSER: Arshan Gailus
MUSIC DIRECTOR: Gregory Boover

CAST MEMBERS
Martin Jason Asprey (Antonio/Sea Captain)
Steven Barkhimer (Sir Toby Belch)
Gregory Boover (Feste)
Nigel Gore (Andrew Aguecheek)
Deaon Griffin-Pressley (Sebastian)
Cloteal L. Horne (Olivia)
Ella Loudon (Viola)
Bella Merlin (Maria)
Miles Anderson (Malvolio)
Bryce Michael Wood (Duke Orsino)

SCHEDULE
JULY
Tuesday, July 2 - 7:30 PM (Preview)
Wednesday, July 3 - 7:30 PM (Preview)
Thursday, July 4 - 6:00 PM (Preview)
Friday, July 5 - 7:30 PM (Preview)
Saturday, July 6 - 7:30 PM (Press Night)
Sunday, July 7 - 2:00 PM
Tuesday, July 9 - 7:30 PM
Wednesday, July 10 - 7:30 PM (Press Night)
Thursday, July 11 - 7:30 PM
Friday, July 12 - 7:30 PM
Saturday, July 13 - 7:30 PM
Sunday, July 14 - 7:30 PM
Tuesday, July 16 - 7:30 PM
Wednesday, July 17 - 7:30 PM
Thursday, July 18 - 2:00 PM
Friday, July 19 - 7:30 PM
Saturday, July 20 - 7:30 PM
Sunday, July 21 - 7:30 PM
Tuesday, July 23 - 2:00 PM
Wednesday, July 24 - 7:30 PM
Thursday, July 25 - 2:00 PM
Friday, July 26 - 7:30 PM
Saturday, July 27 - 7:30 PM
Sunday, July 28 - 2:00 PM
Tuesday, July 30 - 2:00 PM
Wednesday, July 31 - 7:30 PM

AUGUST
Thursday, August 1 - 2:00 PM
Friday, August 2 - 7:30 PM
Saturday, August 3 - 7:30 PM
Sunday, August 4 - 2:00 PM (Closing)

Plot Summary
Gasping on the shores of Illyria after a shipwreck which cast her brother into the raging sea, Viola finds solace disguised as a boy in the service of Duke Orsino, for whom she falls hard. Orsino is smitten with the idea of love in the person of Lady Olivia, who has recently lost her own brother and couldn't be more underwhelmed by his affections. Olivia's uncle, Sir Toby Belch, and his crew find great delight overturning the household with their raucous antics and song while driving the penultimate of stuffed shirts, Malvolio, nuts. A rich, affecting, and deeply funny story of longing, love, and laughter which paints Shakespeare at his peak.

About Allyn Burrows
(Twenty-First Season; Artistic Director; Director: Twelfth Night) S&Co: Director of 40th Season’s The Tempest and the 41st Season’s As You Like It. Performances: God of Carnage, Or, King John, Much Ado About Nothing, Henry V, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Henry IV Part 1, etc. As Artistic Director of Actors’ Shakespeare Project, directed numerous productions and performed in The Winter’s Tale, Henry VIII, Twelfth Night, King Lear, etc. Performances in Boston include Can You Forgive Her (Huntington Theatre), Breaking the Code (Underground Railway Theatre), Shipwrecked (The Lyric Stage), The Seafarer and The Homecoming(Merrimack Repertory Theater), Five by Tenn (Speakeasy Stage). Elliot Norton Award for The Homecoming, King Lear, Five by Tenn; IRNE Award for Breaking the Code. Off-Broadway: Bug, Killer Joe, Louis Slotin Sonata, Closetland, etc. Regionally: Actors’ Theatre of Louisville, American Conservatory Theatre, Long Wharf, Denver Center, Walnut St. Television: “The Broad Squad,” “Law and Order,” “Law and Order: Criminal Intent,” “Against the Law.” Films include The Company Men, Julie & Julia, and Manchester by the Sea.

About William Shakespeare
Shakespeare was an English poet, playwright, and actor, widely regarded as the greatest writer in the English language and the world’s pre-eminent dramatist. His works, including some collaborations, consist of about 37 plays, 154 sonnets, two long narrative poems, and several other poems. His plays have been translated into every major language and are performed more often than those of any other playwright.

About Shakespeare & Company
Located in the beautiful Berkshires of Western Massachusetts, Shakespeare & Company is one of the leading Shakespeare festivals of the world. Founded in 1978, the organization attracts over 40,000 patrons annually. The Company is also home to an internationally renowned Center for Actor Training and award-winning Education Program. More information is available at www.shakespeare.org.

Photos: Twelfth Night Rehearsal Photos

Crown

Shakespeare & Company is a professional live theatre company in the heart of the Berkshires, presenting a vibrant summer performance season featuring the works of Shakespeare in repertory with classic and contemporary plays. The Company offers one of the most extensive actor training programs by a regional theatre in the country, and is also home to an award-winning and nationally recognized theatre-in-education program.

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