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"Shakespeare as it should be. OST is hammering out a new tradition…first rate entertainment."

- Orlando Weekly


Plays and Events

19th Season (2007 - 2008)

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Oz As You Like It
The Comedy of Errors Opus
Shylock PlayFest! The Harriett Lake Festival of New Plays
The Secret Garden If You Give a Mouse a Cookie
A Tuna Christmas Macbeth


OZ
June 19 - July 29, 2007

Based on the book by L. Frank Baum
Adapted by Patrick Shanahan


"Home is where you are loved. With brains, courage, heart and most
important, imagination...you'll walk through life with ruby slippers!"


While author L. Frank Baum is writing "The Wonderful Wizard of Oz", his
housekeeper and a girl named Dot get swept up in his magical tale. Watch how ordinary objects become the enchanted land of OZ and its delightful characters...and yes, Toto too!

Oz
Showtimes Sponsors

Goldman Theater

- Tues - Thurs: 10:30 a.m.

- Sat:. 2 p.m.

- Sun.: 4:30 p.m.

No performance on Wednesday, July 4.

Darden Foundation
Mrs. Fields
Borders

Preview Video
Coming Soon
Dramatis Personae

- Dot: Lexi Langs
- Bridgey: Melissa Mason
- L. Frank Baum: Brandon Roberts

Production Team

- Director: Patrick Flick
- Scenic Design:
Robbin Watts
- Lighting Design:
Amy Hadley
- Costume Design:
Denise R. Warner
- Sound Design:
PJ Albert
- Stage Manager:
Jamie Mykins
- Assistant Stage Manager:
Nicole Peters

*Denotes a member of Actors' Equity Association **Denotes a member of United Scenic Artists

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THE COMEDY OF ERRORS
September 12 October 7, 2007

By William Shakespeare

"Me thinks you are my glass, and not my brother;
I see by you I am a sweet-fac'd youth!"


In Shakespeare's funniest and shortest comedy, two identical twin brothers
and their identical servants end up in the same town, having no idea the other
exists. Hilarity ensues with mistaken identities, confusion, and mayhem as the events build to the side-splitting solution!

The Comedy of Errors
Reviews
Theater review: 'The Comedy of Errors' a comedy of hair
Elizabeth Maupin, ORLANDO SENTINEL

Behold Antipholus of Syracuse, all done up in cantaloupe-colored robes and cascading curls like a Christmas gift from a Hare Krishna.

There's an actor beneath all that hair. And his extravagant coif, along with his fanciful beard and dress, are both blessing and curse for The Comedy of Errors, Orlando Shakespeare Theater's season opener.

There's no denying that Comedy's cast members look not only fabulous but loony -- those Lincolnesque beards, those fetching tie-dyed togas, those rivulets of hair. But it's hard to see the performers behind all that finery, and it's sometimes hard to get Shakespeare's words behind all the commotion onstage.

Granted, The Comedy of Errors is Shakespeare at his silliest: You're not missing many earth-shattering insights if you don't understand every allusion in what may be Shakespeare's very first play. Lots of people will be happy just to revel in the foolishness, and for them there are plenty of heads bashed with turkey drumsticks and a long display of what the woman behind me called "Mel Brooks moments" -- in other words, an extended sequence of breaking wind.

Director Patrick Flick makes much of such moments, and he has on hand an array of actors who could pull laughs out of a rock. He also has the benefit of a great-looking production, with set designer Bert Scott's ancient-Greece set, all arches and ivy and baroque-looking statues; and costume designer Jack Smith's flights of fancy in shades of melon and blueberry and gold.

There amid the frippery unfolds the story of two sets of identical twins, both shipwrecked as children. One pair, the master Antipholus and his servant Dromio, winds up in ancient Ephesus, and the other pair -- also, strangely enough, named Antipholus and Dromio -- land in ancient Syracuse. When the Syracusian twins turn up in Ephesus, everybody seems to know them, and all hell breaks loose.

Comedy's actors do a lot with the situation, and some of them are masters of such stuff. Suzanne O'Donnell is a stitch as the spitfire Adriana, the bombastic wife of Antipholus of Ephesus; Sarah Ireland turns Luciana, Adriana's sister, into a cartoon-like baby doll. As Antipholus of Syracuse, Robby Pigott shows the comical frustrations of a traveler who stumbles into a world gone mad. And Brad DePlanche and Brandon Roberts make a perfect pair of mismatched twin servants -- Roberts the size of a twig, DePlanche quite a bit chunkier, both of them able to turn deadpan into a work of art.

Mark Lainer and Jason Horne are funny in smaller roles, and Anne Hering and Bob Dolan do well in serious ones. But too many of Comedy's cast members make too little impression, and you have to look hard to tell who's who behind the hair.

And too few of the actors know how to bring Shakespeare's verse to life. This tale of separated families shouldn't lose you in the telling, no matter how many pairs of carbon-copy twins set loose onstage. Too bad that the beauty of Shakespeare's words is lost in the tomfoolery.
Showtimes Sponsors

Margeson Theater

- Wed & Thurs: 7 p.m.

- Fri & Sat: 8 p.m.

- Sun: 2 p.m.

- Previews: Wednesday, Sept. 12 & Thursday, Sept. 13 at 7 p.m.

- Senior Matinees: Wednesday, September 19 at 2 p.m.

Regions
Dean, Mead, Egerton, Bloodworth, Capouano
& Bozarth, PA
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Preview Video
Coming Soon
Dramatis Personae
- Duke Solinus: Chris Bellinger
- Aegeon: Bob Dolan*
- Antipholus of Syracuse: Robby Pigott*
- Antipholus of Ephesus: Daniel Harray*
- Dromio of Syracuse: Brad DePlanche*
- Dromio of Ephesus: Brandon Roberts
- Balthazar, a merchant of Venice: Jason Horne
- Angelo, a goldsmith: Mark Lainer*
- Doctor Pinch: Jason Horne
- First Merchant: Brian McNally
- Second Merchant: Chantry Banks
- Aemilia, Abbess at Ephesus: Anne Hering*
- Adriana, wife of Antipholus of Ephesus: Suzanne O'Donnell*
- Luciana, Adriana's sister: Sarah Ireland*
- Nell, a kitchen maid: Erika Wilhite
- Courtesan: Jennifer Drew
- Soldier: Chantry Banks
- Drunk: Brian McNally
- Charm Seller: Erika Wilhite
- Priestess: Jennifer Drew & Jennie Siriani*
- Drunk: Chris Bellinger
- Attendant/Officer: Joe Kemper
- Executioner: Jennie Siriani*
- Attendant: Jason Horne
- Fishmonger: Anne Hering*
Understudies

- Antipholous of Syracue: Joe Kemper
- Antipholous of Epheseus: Benjamin Cole;
- Dromio of Syracuse/Attendant/Officer/Soldier/Merchants/Drunk: Corey Loftus
- Adriana: Jennifer Drew
- Angelo: Chantry Banks
- Luciana/Courtesan/Priestess/Nell/Charm Seller: Jennie Siriani*
- Aegeon: Chris Bellinger
- Aemilia: Erika Wilhite
- Dromio of Epheseus: Brian McNally
- Bathazar/Pinch/Duke/Drunk: Benjamin Cole
- Exec/Gaoler/Priestess: Samantha Stern*

Production Team
- Director: Patrick Flick
- Scenic Designer:
Bert Scott**
- Lighting Designer:
Joseph P. Oshry**
- Costume Designer:
Jack Smith
- Sound Designer:
Michael Andrews
- Stage Manager:
Amy Nicole Davis*
- Assistant Stage Managers:
Rachel Moll & Robert Schupbach
- Sound Board Operator:
Samantha Stern
- Light Board Operator:
Justin Sanchack
- Fight Choreographer:
Benjamin Cole
- Wardrobe:
Erin Rodgers & AraBella Fischer
*Denotes a member of Actors' Equity Association **Denotes a member of United Scenic Artists

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SHYLOCK
October 10 - November 11, 2007

By Gareth Armstrong

"Hath not a Jew eyes? Hath not a Jew hands, organs, dimensions,
senses, affections, passions...?"


This riveting one-man play fresh from a successful run Off-Broadway, explores
The Merchant of Venice through the eyes of its controversial character, Shylock. Experience an invigorating and thought-provoking evening exploring art, racism, power, religious persecution, villainy and self-identity.

Shylock
Reviews

New light shines on dark 'Shylock': The title character is easy to hate, but this gripping play elicits understanding and sympathy.
Elizabeth Maupin, ORLANDO SENTINEL

No wonder everyone is afraid of Shylock.

Look at the man, dressed all in black, his sober homburg resolutely covering his head. Listen to him denounce the Christians who have treated him ill.

But lend an ear to his story in Gareth Armstrong's intriguing play Shylock, and you'll think differently of Shakespeare's much-maligned creation.

For four centuries, Shylock has been one of the most difficult of Shakespeare's characters -- The Merchant of Venice's comical Jewish villain, the ogre who demands a pound of a Christian's flesh when the man neglects to repay a debt. Many theatergoers loved to hate him. Jewish theatergoers recoiled. Hitler is said to have loved the play. Some American schools have banned it.

So, in Shylock, writer-director Armstrong fills in all of Shylock's backstory. He doesn't let the intractable moneylender off the hook. But this one-person play so engagingly makes its case that your anger turns to pity, and understanding replaces disgust.

Shakespeare probably never met a Jew, at least not officially: They were banished from England in 1290 and not allowed back until 1656, 40 years after the playwright's death. So it was with the attitudes of Elizabethan society that he created Shylock, the Jewish usurer who is jeered and disdained by the men with whom he does business.

It's not clear what Shakespeare thought of Shylock (although he certainly gave the character more ambiguities than his contemporary Christopher Marlowe gave the title character in The Jew of Malta, who poisons an entire convent). Perhaps Shakespeare never knew about the "Jew badge" Shylock would have had to wear, or the belief in blood libel -- the allegations that Jews sacrificed Christians and drank their blood -- or the epithets Shylock might have been called, which are scrawled across the proscenium of Bob Phillips' expressive set.

For Orlando Shakespeare Theater, Armstrong has directed, with actor Steven Patterson taking on all the characters -- most significantly Tubal, a character with only eight lines in The Merchant but, importantly, a Jew who seems to be Shylock's only friend.

As Shylock, Patterson appears tall, shrewd and bitter; as Tubal, he's small and unprepossessing, and not only because he takes off Shylock's imposing hat. Patterson's apologetic, remorseful Tubal draws the audience into his story. And he makes the persecution of Shylock, and of his people, hit home in a new way.

It's a lens through which Shylock's audiences will see The Merchant of Venice -- a lens that will only sharpen Shakespeare's play.

Showtimes Sponsors

Goldman Theater

- Wed & Thurs: 7 p.m.

- Fri & Sat: 8 p.m.

- Sun: 2 p.m.

- Previews: Wednesday, Oct. 10 & Thursday, Oct. 11 at 7 p.m.

- Senior Matinees: Wednesday, Oct. 25 & Nov. 7 at 2 p.m.

Regions
A. Brian Phillips, P.A.
Albertsons
Radio One/Motorola
Southern Printing
TKO Advertising
WESH-TV2
WLOQ

Preview Video
Dramatis Personae

- Tubal: Steven Patterson

Production Team
- Director: Gareth Armstrong
- Scenic Designer: Bob Phillips**
- Lighting Designer: Eric T. Haugen**
- Costume Designer: Denise Warner
- Sound Designer: Matthew Given
- Stage Manager: Roxanne Fay*
- Assistant Stage Managers: Annie Simpson & Andrea Wylie
- Light Board Operator: Justin Sanchack
- Wardrobe: Erin Rodgers
- Movement Coach: Christopher Niess
*Denotes a member of Actors' Equity Association **Denotes a member of United Scenic Artists

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THE SECRET GARDEN
October 20 November 17, 2007

By April-Dawn Gladu
Book by Frances Hodgson Burnett


"Where you tend a rose, my lad, a thistle cannot grow."

Experience a world of wonder as a sad orphaned girl discovers a secret garden. As she tends it, she experiences a wonderful transformation and learns to help others love the garden so its magic will work on them too! An inspiring story for the whole family!

Interested in producing The Secret Garden? Visit www.tyascripts.com for information about rights and availability.

The Secret Garden
Reviews
Theater Review: "Secret Garden' has magic to share
Rebecca Swain, ORLANDO SENTINEL

There is a place in this world where secret rooms are waiting to be discovered, and mysteries just asking to be unraveled, one where it is possible to talk with birds, or walk on the edges of a misty moor in search of a hidden garden.

It is a place of gothic novels and adventure -- a place for The Secret Garden.

The Darden Foundation Theater for Young Audiences series at Orlando Shakespeare Theater continues with April-Dawn Gladu's charming adaptation of Francis Hodgson Burnett's classic, directed by David Lee. The production, which continues through Nov. 17, is rendered in a smart, appealing way and is perfect for families.

Young Mary Lennox is shuttled off to live with her uncle in Yorkshire, England, after her parents die in a cholera epidemic in India. The spoiled girl (played with an impish delight by Jennifer Drew) is accustomed to having her own retinue of servants do everything for her but soon develops into a cheerful sprite -- no less willful, but far happier once she learns to do for herself. With her independent spirit and cheerful heart, she begins to have an effect on others around her.

While playing around the grounds of her uncle's estate, Mary discovers the key to a secret garden, a wild and long-forgotten place in need of love. Mary and her friend Dickon (Benjamin Cole) pour their energy and their joy into the neglected garden until the small patch of land blooms with the first tentative signs of life.

"It's magic," Mary says in wonder, and it could well be. Magic so strong it can revive the spirit of her sickly cousin Colin (Corey Loftus), long trapped by rigid rules in a lonesome part of the estate. Magic so powerful it can thaw the cold heart of her uncle, or make the spiteful housekeeper, Mrs. Medlock, see the error of her ways.

To embody the idea of the garden's living soul, Gladu and Lee have an actor play the part of the Garden Tree, which watches over the action like a benevolent spirit. Indeed, as played by Jennie Sirianni, the tree is like a graceful wood sprite.

The Secret Garden is perhaps one of Gladu's best adaptations to date. She approaches the task with a delicate eye, moving the story along as briskly as possible to fit into an hourlong run time while maintaining the story's sense of gothic grandeur. Her touching interpretation is a perfect match for Lee's sense of visual drama. The production has so many lovely visual touches that add to the sense of mystery and magic surrounding Mary's secret garden. In the opening scene, a robin puppet glides by against a rich orange background, a nod to Julie Taymor's use of puppetry in storytelling. The set, which begins as a starkly beautiful lattice-work background, morphs into a moody English garden, wild and gray, just waiting to be reborn -- all with just a few touches of color.

The story has charm to spare, but the extra touches really bring a true sense of the magic to life, and leave you with a sure feeling that anything is possible if you just wish it so.

Showtimes Sponsors

Margeson Theater

- Sat:. 2 p.m.

- Sun.: 4:30 p.m.

Darden Foundation
Mrs. Fields
Borders

Preview Video
Dramatis Personae

- Mary: Jennifer Drew
- Dickon: Benjamin Cole
- Colin: Corey Loftus
- Garden Tree: Jennie Sirianni

Production Team
Coming Soon
*Denotes a member of Actors' Equity Association **Denotes a member of United Scenic Artists

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A TUNA CHRISTMAS
November 28 December 23, 2007

By Jaston Williams, Joe Sears & Ed Howard

"At Didi's Used Weapons you'll have a Holly Jolly Christmas, and the criminal will have a Silent Night!"

It's Christmas in the smallest town in Texas and their two radio personalities report on various yuletide activities, including competition in the annual lawn display contest. Join us for all the laughs as two talented men play all the eccentric citizens in Tuna, Texas. Y'all come!

A Tuna Christmas
Reviews

Theatre Review: A Tuna Christmas
Living Orlando

Political correctness takes a holiday in "A Tuna Christmas", a comedy that is currently being performed by the Orlando Shakespeare Theatre at the John and Rita Lowndes Shakespeare Center in Loch Haven Park.

Opening in a radio station with the call letters OKKK, the small, Southern Baptist town of Tuna, Texas is full of quirky residents with little care for the outside world. The "Smut Snatchers", a local group trying to clean up the Christmas Story, hold the belief that "censorship is as American as apple pie." And there's Elmer Watkins of Clan 429, whose radio ads invite locals to attend the "whitest" Christmas party in town. Just about every character has something to say that wouldn't fly in the real world.

But the real story - and comedy - is found in the struggles of Tuna's residents, all of which are coming to a head this holiday season. Bertha Burmiller is one such resident, with her cheating, never-present husband, a son that's about to finish his probation and a daughter who's infatuated - and possibly in love - with the town's big-headed theatre director. Her dream of a normal, family Christmas is not only impossible, it's something that even she knows wouldn't make things right.

In addition to these personal stories, the holiday festivities in Tuna are under attack by a "Christmas Phantom." Various forms of sabotage have been used to ruin or alter the events around town with the signature event, a lawn decorating contest, being the main target. One resident, Vera Carp, is especially worried that her run of 15 straight years as the contest's winner is in jeopardy due to this unknown assailant.

In all, twenty two residents help tell the story of "A Tuna Christmas," a whirlwind comedy that will have you laughing out loud and left in amazement of the two actors who make up the cast.

That's right...two actors, playing eleven parts each, are all you'll ever see on stage. Philip Nolen and Brad Deplanche seamlessly transition between characters, maintaining the integrity of a list of personalities that includes the entire Burmiller family, a used gun saleswoman, a bed-wetting police officer and so much more. Their performances are so good that in some scenes, you half-expect additional characters to make an appearance. This is especially true in the final scene depicting the radio station's Christmas party.

As far as comedies go, this one is special because of its characters. While the story lines are very good (and funny), none of them are strong enough from start to finish to be the topic that people will first talk about when describing the show. Inevitably, the talk will start with the characters and the crazy personalities that the actors are able to portray. That's probably what the writers intended, anyway.

Showtimes Sponsors

Margeson Theater

- Wed & Thurs: 7 p.m.

- Fri & Sat: 8 p.m.

- Sun: 2 p.m.

- Previews: Wednesday, Nov. 28 & Thursday, Nov. 29 at 7 p.m.

- Senior Matinees: Wednesday, Dec. 19 at 2 p.m.

Regions
Massey Services, Inc.
Holland & Knight
Geller, Ragans, James, Oppenheimer & Creel
Albertsons
AT&T
Radio One/Motorola
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Preview Video
Coming Soon
Dramatis Personae

PHILIP NOLEN*
Thurston Wheelis
Elmer Watkins
Bertha Bumiller
R.R. Snavely
Aunt Pearl Burras
Sherriff Givens
Ike Thompson
Inita Goodwin
Leonard Childers
Phoebe Burkhalter
Joe Bob Lipsey

BRAD DEPLANCHE*

Arles Struvie
Didi Snavely
Petey Fisk
Jody Bumiller
Charlene Bumiller
Stanley Bumiller
Vera Carp
Dixie Deberry
Helen Bedd
Farley Burkhalter
Garland Poteet

Production Team
- Director:Patrick Flick
- Scenic Designer:
Bert Scott**
- Lighting Designer:
Amy Hadley
- Costume Designer:
Kristina Tollefson**
- Sound Designer:
Matthew Given
- Stage Manager:
Amy Nicole Davis*
- Assistant Stage Managers:
Rachel K. Moll, Annie Simpson & Andrea Wylie
- Light Board Operator:
Erika Whilhite
- Sound Board Operator:
Justin Sanchack
- Wardrobe Crew Chief:
AraBella Fischer
- Wardrobe:
Chantry Banks, Joe Kemper & Erin Rodgers
*Denotes a member of Actors' Equity Association **Denotes a member of United Scenic Artists

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AS YOU LIKE IT
January 9 February 3, 2008

By William Shakespeare

"I like this place and willingly could waste my time in it!"

Welcome to the wonderful Forest of Arden where true love prevails. Fall in love again as Rosalind and Orlando, two of Shakespeare's most romantic lovers, run away to the forest and discover how "all the worlds' a stage." A delightful romantic comedy!

As You Like It
Reviews
Coming Soon
Showtimes Sponsors

Margeson Theater

- Wed & Thurs: 7 p.m.

- Fri & Sat: 8 p.m.

- Sun: 2 p.m.

- Previews: Wednesday, Jan. 9 & Thursday, Jan. 10 at 7 p.m.

- Senior Matinees: Wednesday, Jan. 16 at 2 p.m.

Regions
Lowndes, Drosdick, Doster, Kantor, and Reed, P.A.
CNLBank
Turner Construction
Company
Albertsons
Radio One/Motorola
Southern Printing
TKO Advertising
WESH-TV2
WLOQ

Preview Video
Coming Soon
Dramatis Personae

The Court
- Duke Fredrick, Duke Senior's brother:
Carl N. Wallnau*
- Celia, his daughter: Susannah Millonzi*
- Rosalind, daughter of Duke Senior: Polly Lee*
- Orlando, son of the late Sir Rowland de Boys: Tyler Hollinger*
- Oliver, son of the late Sir Rowland de Boys: Joe Kemper
- Jacques, son of the late Sir Rowland de Boys: Benjamin Cole
- Charles, Duke Fredrick's wrestler: Charles Waters
- Le Beau, a courtier: Chantry Banks
- Touchstone, a Fool: Brad DePlanche*
- Adam, servant to Oliver: Brandon Roberts
- Dennis, servant to Oliver: Benjamin Cole
- Duke Fredrick's Lords: Chris Bellinger, Benjamin Cole & Corey Loftus
- Worshippers: Jennifer Drew, Trenell Mooring & Judi Mwale

Arden
- Duke Senior, living in exile: Carl Wallnau*
- Jaques: Eric Zivot*
- Amiens, in exile with the Duke: Chris Bellinger
- Musician: Jennifer Drew
- Corin, a shepherd: Bob Dolan*
- Silvius, a shepherd: Corey Loftus
- Phebe, a shepherdess: Meaghan Fenner
- Audrey, a goat-herd: Erika Wilhite
- William: Benjamin Cole
- Hymen: Jennifer Drew
- Hymen's Attendants: Trenell Mooring & Judi Mwale

Understudies
- Duke Fredrick/Duke Senior/Jaques: Chris Bellinger
- Celia: Jennifer Drew
- Rosalind: Brit Cooper
- Orlando/Charles/Amiens: Benjamin Cole
- Oliver/Dennis/Jacques De Boys/William/Silvius/Rock Thrower: Brian McNally
- Touchstone: Brandon Roberts
- Corin: David Sucharski
- Phebe/Worshipper/Hesperia/Hyman/Dancer: Jennie Sirianni
- Audrey/Worshipper/Dancer: Samantha Stern
Production Team
- Director/Fight Choreographer: Dan McCleary
- Dance Choreographer:
Susannah Millonzi
- Music Arranger/Composer:
Michael Andrew
- Scenic Designer:
Bob Phillips**
- Lighting Designer:
Bert Scott**
- Costume Designer:
Lisa Cody-Rapport
- Sound Designer:
Matthew Given
- Stage Manager:
Angi Weiss-Brandt*
- Assistant Stage Managers:
Annie Simpson & Andrea Wylie
- Light Board Operator:
Jennie Siriani
- Sound Board Operator:
Justin Sanchack
- Wardrobe:
AraBella Fischer & Erin Rodgers
- Fight Captain:
Benjamin Cole
- Dance Captain:
Jennifer Drew
*Denotes a member of Actors' Equity Association **Denotes a member of United Scenic Artists

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OPUS
February 6 March 9, 2008

By Michael Hollinger

"That's why a resonant hall is so poignant -- the notes last a half-second
longer, giving the brief illusion of immortality."

The huge hit reading of PlayFest! 2007 becomes the premiere this season.
A world-renowned string quartet has only a week to rehearse Beethoven's
"Opus 131" for a performance at the White House. Tempers and partners flare as the pressure increases. The Orlando Sentinel proclaimed, "The audience loved this comic drama."

Opus
Reviews
Opus
Carl F Gauze, ARCHIKULTURE DIGEST

We associate office politics with big corporations and hand-to-hand combat with marriages. But take the worst of both worlds, and we find ourselves in the middle of The Lazzara Quartet. These 4 string players struggle with artistic and financial direction, fight schoolyard battles with no 3rd grade teacher to moderate, and suffer painful personal attacks with no opportunity for make-up sex. We meet them as they teeter on the brink of success while seeking a replacement player for the unstable and recently fired Dorian (T. Robert Pigott). He was lover to bossy Elliot (David Karl Lee), but this sort of intergroup romance is always a bad idea. Dorian saw music no one else could, and perhaps his genius was worth his undependability, but replacement Grace (Meagan English) just might be his equal, and you won't have to worry about her missing a dose of Lithium. Calm and collected Alan (C. S. Lee) books the group into the White House and a full 25 minutes of fame, but they have one week to rehearse and their 4th member Carl (Nowicki), has a touch of cancer bugging him. This should be one impressive concert, at least backstage.

"Opus" appeared in last year' PlayFest as a workshop, and while this version lacks major script changes, it feels tighter and slicker. The cast packs some real star power, with the PlayFest special Guest C. S. Lee in the lead role as a skeptical and detached musician, fed up with his quartet fellows and wishing they could leave their personal problems outside. Pigott bubbles along, always showing the bright, positive face of manic depression, but you'll wonder what he saw in David Lee's prissy and bossy Elliot. Grace and Alan make for a more believable chemistry, even as the specter of another inter band romance haunts the quartet. Nowicki's wild hair and flustered parent persona gives him the look and feel of a prophet wandering the desert, seeking to redeem the rest of the cast from everything that leads to apostasy from gospels of Bartok and Beethoven.

There's a smooth soundtrack of Lazzara strings supporting the cast as they constantly prodding each other about minor errors in playing. Director Routhier assures me those errors are real, but they are so minor it takes a much better ear than mine to hear them. Fortunately, this cast MAKES me believe I can, and that's more than enough. "Opus" immerses you in highest levels of musicianship, but keeps the problems right down here with us mortals. It's theater at its finest.
Showtimes Sponsors

Goldman Theater

- Wed & Thurs: 7 p.m.

- Fri & Sat: 8 p.m.

- Sun: 2 p.m.

- Previews: Wednesday, Feb. 6 & Thursday, Feb. 7 at 7 p.m.

- Senior Matinees: Wednesday, Feb. 20 & March 5 at 2 p.m.

Regions
Harriett Lake
Harris Harris
Bauerle Sharma
Albertsons
Radio One/Motorola
Southern Printing
TKO Advertising
WESH-TV2
WLOQ

Preview Video
Coming Soon
Dramatis Personae

- Alan: C.S Lee*
- Carl: Tom Nowicki*
- Dorian: Robbie Piggot*
- Elliott: David Karl Lee
- Grace: Meghan English

Understudies
- Dorian: Corey Loftus
- Elliot: Ben Cole
- Carl: Chris Bellinger
- Alan: Joe Kemper
- Grace: Jen Drew
Production Team
- Director: Mark Routhier
- Scenic Designer: Bob Phillips**
- Lighting Designer: Kevin Griffin**
- Costume Designer: Kristina Tollefson
- Sound Designer: Matthew Given
- Stage Manager: Amy Nicole Davis*
- Assistant Stage Managers: Annie Simpson & Andrea Wylie
- Light Board Operator: Jennie Siriani
- Sound Board Operator: Justin Sanchack
- Wardrobe: AraBella Fischer & Erin Rodgers
*Denotes a member of Actors' Equity Association **Denotes a member of United Scenic Artists

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PLAYFEST! THE HARRIETT LAKE FESTIVAL OF NEW PLAYS
February 8 February 17, 2008

"…new works by recognized and up-and-coming playwrights…high-quality acting and directing and scripts with a lot of potential..." - Orlando Sentinel

PlayFest has grown into a 10-day celebration of new play readings,
workshops, panel discussions and keynote addresses from nationally
recognized playwrights. Many of our readings have returned as full
productions including Around the World in 80 Days, Every Christmas
Story Ever Told
, Robinson Crusoe, Crime and Punishment, and this year's Opus. PlayFest…it's what's next!

PlayFest!
Showtimes Sponsors
Mandell Studio and throughout the Lowndes Shakespeare Center
Various Times

Harriett Lake
Orange Country Arts & Cultural Affairs
Orlando Weekly

Full Productions
Opus
By Michael Hollinger
February 6 - March 9, 2008
Wednesdays, Thursdays at 7 p.m.
Fridays, Saturdays at 8 p.m.
Sundays at 2 p.m.
Goldman Theater
The huge hit reading of PlayFest! 2007 becomes the premiere this season.
A world-renowned string quartet has only a week to rehearse Beethoven's
"Opus 131" for a performance at the White House. Tempers and partners flare as the pressure increases. The Orlando Sentinel proclaimed, "The audience loved this comic drama."
Opus
Special Events

A Keynote Address
Writing What Matters
John Pielmeier, Author of Agnes of God
Saturday, Feb. 9 at 7:30 p.m.
Margeson Theater
Free with PlayFest button
Followed by a one-time only reading of the first act of his new play, Madonna and Child. Madonna and Child contains strong language and mature content.

Panel Discussion
What Is The Role Of The Critic In New Play Development?
Panel will include Representatives from the American Theater Critics Association, The Dramatists Guild and Guest Playwrights
Sunday, Feb. 10 at Noon - 1:30 p.m.
Mandell Theater
Free with PlayFest button
Play-in-a-Day
Produced for PlayFest by Orlando Fringe Festival Artistic Director, Beth Marshall
Monday, Feb. 11 at 7:00 p.m.
Margeson Theater
$5 with PlayFest button
Enjoy brand new 10-minute plays that were created in only one day -- from blank page to the stage. Six adventurous writers will learn the theme of their play and meet their director and cast through a random drawing held Sunday, Feb. 10 following the Panel Discussion.
Typewriter Plays
Assorted typewriters will be scattered throughout the Shakespeare Center Lobby. Try your hand at a one-page, 2-character play. Typewriter plays will be collected and a winning entry will be selected by a specialized team of judges for a cool prize at the end of PlayFest 2008!
Classes

Fringe 101 and 102
Orlando International Fringe Festival Artistic Director, Beth Marshall
Sunday, Feb. 10 and Sunday, Feb. 17
2:00 - 4:00 p.m. both days
McLaughlin Studio
Cost $10 + PlayFest button

Master Playwriting Class
John Pielmeier, Author of Agnes of God
Sunday, Feb. 10 at 2:00 - 4:00 p.m.
Cost $50 + PlayFest button
Mandell Theater
Classical Adaptation Class
Orlando Shakespeare Theater Artistic Director, Jim Helsinger
Saturday, Feb. 16 at Noon - 2:00 p.m.
Cost $50 + PlayFest button
Studio B
Workshops
THE BLUE-SKY BOYS
By Deborah Brevoort

Saturday, Feb. 9 at 2:30 - 5:00 p.m.
Wednesday, Feb. 13 at 7:00 - 9:30 p.m.
Friday, Feb. 15 at 8:00 - 10:30 p.m.
Saturday, Feb. 16 at Noon - 2:30 p.m.
Mandell Theater

The engineers behind the first Apollo moon landing are in big trouble. President Kennedy has ordered the United States must beat the Russians to the first manned landing on the moon. Time is running out, so there is only one thing left to do...Blue Sky it! Enter Buck Rogers, Icarus, Galileo, Snoopy, and the Red Baron as the heavenly heroes that inspired these NASA engineers to pursue their boyhood dreams of space exploration.
The Blue Sky Boys
THE CASTLE OF OTRANTO
By John Minigan (past PlayFest author - Breaking the Shakespeare Code)

Friday, Feb. 8 at 8:00 - 10:30 p.m.
Thursday, Feb. 14 at 7:00 - 9:30 p.m.
Saturday, Feb. 16 at 5:30 - 8:00 p.m.
Sunday, Feb. 17 at 8:00 - 10:30 p.m.
Mandell Theater

Prince Manfred has ruled Otranto for years, despite his fear of a prophecy that he will lose power when the true owner of the castle grows "too large to
inhabit it." When a giant helmet falls from the sky killing son Conrad on his wedding day, followed by enormous body parts appearing throughout the castle, Manfred must scramble to divorce his wife, marry his son's fiancee and produce a male heir before the prophecy is fulfilled.
Castle of Otranto
THE UNFORTUNATES
By Aoise Stratford

Saturday, Feb. 9 at 5:30 - 7:30 p.m.
Sunday, Feb. 10 at 7:30 - 9:30 p.m.
Saturday, Feb. 16 at 3:00 - 5:00 p.m.
Sunday, Feb. 17 at 5:00- - :00 p.m.
Mandell Theater

Mary Jane Kelly has a problem. She's a pound forty behind in her rent, she's lost her key and her boyfriend has moved out. It's 1888 -- not a good time to
be poor and unfortunate on the streets of London. Somewhere out there in the foggy shadows of night, one of the history's most notorious criminals, Jack
the Ripper, is at work. Mary only has two ways to secure her own front door. One of them is prostitution. The other is selling something she shouldn't posses in the first place, something she'll have to betray her murdered best friend and herself to give up.
The Unfortunates
Readings
ALFRED KINSEY: A LOVE STORY
By Mike Folie

Tuesday, Feb. 12 at 7:30 - 10:00 p.m.
Sunday, Feb. 17 at 5:00 - 7:30 p.m.
Studio B

It's 1953. Famous sex researcher Alfred Kinsey is giving a speech in Troy, NY when he is accosted by a young woman in the audience who is strongly opposed to any scientific study of human sex. Kinsey tries to respond, but plagued with a weak heart since childhood, collapses. The play then travels back and forth in time to examine Kinsey's life and work. It is a highly theatrical and fictionalized biography, which reveals the raw emotions that often hide beneath the seemingly cold search for scientific truths. Alfred Kinsey: A Love Story contains sexually explicit material. Mature audiences only.
Alfred Kinsey
ERRATICA
By Reina Hardy

Sunday, Feb. 10 at 2:00 - 4:30 p.m.
Wednesday, Feb. 13 at 7:00 - 9:30 p.m.
Studio B

Professor Samantha Stafford is trying to write a book on Shakespeare in the midst of a host of distractions. One of her students is madly in love with her.
Her publicist wants her to do something more commercial. And she is persistently haunted by an entity claiming to be the ghost of Christopher Marlowe. Meanwhile, Jack Hooper, a librarian who just might be a match for Dr. Stafford, has lost a prized manuscript to a mysterious thief.
Erratica
THE HUNCHBACK OF NOTRE DAME BY VICTOR HUGO
Adapted by Suzanne O'Donnell from the novel by Victor Hugo

Saturday, Feb. 9 at 5:00 - 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, Feb. 16 at 8:30 - 11:00 p.m.
Studio B

It is evening in a Parisian tavern, Pomme d'Eve. Pierre Gringoire, celebrated poet and playwright enters and is begged by the patrons to give a speech or recite a poem. Instead, granting a particular request from a mysterious man at the bar, he begins to tell the infamous tale of The Hunchback of Notre Dame.
The Hunchback of Notre Dame
KAFKA'S SHORTS
Adapted by David Karl Lee

Sunday, Feb. 10 at 5:00 - 6:45 p.m.
Sunday, Feb. 17 at Noon - 1:45 p.m.
Mandell Theater

Three of Franz Kafka's most elusive and phantasmagorical short stories, The Hunger Artist, A Report to an Academy and The Country Doctor are brought to the stage. The transformation of the animal and human body and soul are examined amidst swirling snow storms, raging seas and a dark and mysterious circus midway menagerie.
Kafka's Shorts
LETTERS TO SALA
By Arlene Hutton
Based on Sala's Gift by Ann Kirshner. Originally conceived by Laurena Sacharow.


Presented by Women Playwrights' Initiative

Sunday, Feb. 10 at 5:00 - 7:00 p.m.
Saturday, Feb. 16 at 3:00 - 5:00 p.m.
Studio B

In 1940, sixteen-year-old Sala Garncarz volunteered to take her sister's place in a Nazi forced labor camp. During the next five years, in seven different camps, Sala received over 350 pieces of mail. Risking her life, she managed to save every single letter...and then hide them for almost fifty years.
Letters to Sala
MADONNA AND CHILD
By John Pielmeier

Saturday, Feb. 9 at 8:30 p.m.
Immediately following Mr. Pielmeier's Keynote Address
Margeson Theater

Reading of Act I only.
A brutal murder. An abandoned child.
A disenchanted son. A desperate mother.
A dying saint. A wayward priest.
A passionate detective. A lost masterpiece.
And nothing is quite what it seems.
A new play by John Pielmeier tackles faith, art, and the politics of disbelief.
Madonna and Child
MISS JULIE: FREEDOM SUMMER
An adaptation of August Strindberg's original play by Stephen Sachs

Friday, Feb. 8 at 8:00 - 10:00 p.m.
Saturday, Feb. 9 at Noon - 2:00 p.m.
Studio B

Limited engagement! It's the 4th of July, 1964 in Greenwood, Mississippi - just two days after the signing of the Civil Rights Act by President Johnson. Miss
Julie, the daughter of a wealthy white Superior Court Judge is drinking and dancing with the servants in the barn. Meanwhile her father's African American
chauffeur, John, and cook Christine are judging her in the kitchen. But a moment of passion will soon change the lives of all three for eternity.
Miss Julie
MISSING CELIA ROSE
By Ian August

Saturday, Feb. 9 at 2:30 - 4:45 p.m.
Thursday, Feb. 14 at 7:00 - 9:15 p.m.
Studio B

On a bleak, autumn evening in 1921, a young boy named Geoffrey Pitts discovers that the beloved wife of the Baptist minister, Mrs. Celia Rose Richards, has stolen the only car in town and vanished without a trace. Neither his parents, his teacher, nor townsfolk know anything about the mysterious flight. With the aid of his friend and confidante, Taffy Prull, Geoffrey decides to find Celia Rose and uncover the truth about her disappearance. But in doing so, Geoffrey uncovers hometown secrets that will change life there forever.
 
TROG AND CLAY
By Michael Vukadinovich

Saturday, Feb. 9 at Noon - 2:00 p.m.
Tuesday, Feb. 12 at 5:00 - 7:00 p.m.
Mandell Theater

It's 1880 and Thomas Edison and George Westinghouse are in the middle of the War of Currents, as Westinghouse's Alternating Current becomes a serious rival to Edison's Direct Current. Westinghouse is trying to hold onto his scheming wife, Margueritte, who wants to be an actress, Thomas Edison is using her to get William Kemmler to kill his wife, and Trog and Clay are two foolish, dogcatching hobos at the center of it all. Based on actual events, court transcripts and a little imagination.
Trog and Clay
WITTENBERG
By David Davalos

Friday, Feb. 15 at 8:00 - 10:45 p.m.
Sunday, Feb. 17 at 2:00 - 4:45 p.m.
Studio B

Set during late October of 1517, this sprightly and audacious battle of
wits features university colleagues Dr. Faustus (a man of appetites), Martin
Luther (a man of faith), and their student Hamlet, Prince of Denmark (a
youth struggling not only with his beliefs but also with his tennis game).
Playwright David Davalos brings us the story behind the story of Hamlet in a
highly entertaining and accessible exploration of reason versus faith.
Wittenberg

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IF YOU GIVE A MOUSE A COOKIE
February 23 March 16, 2008

By Laura Numeroff
Adapted by Jody Davidson


"Excuse me, but… HELP!"

A mouse shows up at a little boy's house and asks for a cookie. The mouse
receives the cookie and wants a glass of milk. He receives the glass of milk
and wants a straw. He receives the straw...The rest becomes a chain of
never-ending events!

If You Give a Mouse a Cookie
Showtimes Sponsors

Margeson Theater

- Sat:. 2 p.m.

- Sun.: 4:30 p.m.

Darden Foundation
Bright House Networks
Mrs. Fields
Borders

Preview Video
Coming Soon
Dramatis Personae

- The Boy: Joe Kemper
- Mouse: Jennie Sirianni*
- Jungleman: Brian McNally

Understudies
- Mouse: Jennifer Drew
- Boy: Chantry Banks
- Jungleman: Benjamin Cole
Production Team
- Director: Anne Hering
- Assistant Director: Samantha Stern
- Scenic Designer: Robbin Watts
- Lighting Designer: Amy Hadley
- Costume Designer: Mel Barger
- Sound Designer: Matthew Given
- Stage Manager: Annie Simpson
- Asst. Stage Manager: Andrea Wylie
- Sound Operator: Mary Heffernan
- Wardrobe: Erin Rodgers
*Denotes a member of Actors' Equity Association **Denotes a member of United Scenic Artists

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MACBETH
April 2 - 27, 2008

By William Shakespeare

"Is this a dagger which I see before me, the handle toward my hand?
Come, let me clutch thee."

Three mysterious witches give Macbeth a prophecy that he will become King. Spurred on by his ambitious wife, he quickly decides to take power at any cost and plunges his country into war, destruction, intrigue and murder. This special production will be performed arena style "in the round." Don't miss it!

Macbeth
Reviews

Theater Review: Orlando Shakespeare Theater's "Macbeth"
Elizabeth Maupin, ORLANDO SENTINEL

The hooded, masked fiends who turn up in unexpected corners are only some of the horrors that await an audience in Orlando Shakespeare Theater's Macbeth.

A trio of gaping, hollow-eyed witches intones the famous spell, "Double, double toil and trouble" as if they are summoning a beast from below. The creepy form of a baby doll floats high in the air. Dogs bark feverishly, owls scream, and the natural world seems to have turned upside down.

None of those monstrosities, though, strikes at the gut as compellingly as the fear in the face of a frightened mother or the extinguished cries of a baby lying unprotected in its crib.

The old evils work best in director Jim Helsinger's Macbeth, a gorgeously chilly production that connects most effectively with theatergoers when it finds the humanity in Shakespeare's text.

Helsinger has summoned up his images from horror stories of all kinds -- from movies, from popular culture and especially from a kind of Japanese modern dance called Butoh, in which blank-eyed, white-faced performers move slowly and spasmodically across a stage. In this Macbeth, the visions of Butoh transform the tragedy's three witches into weird, alien beings, who appear from a pit below the earth and seem to be in thrall to some kind of powerful, otherworldly lord.

But those chilling images register in the head, not the heart, and so does much of this production of Shakespeare's dark thriller. Only at some of the play's most vivid moments -- when Lady Macduff and her children are threatened, when the leering ghost of Banquo stalks a terrified Macbeth around a banquet hall -- does this Macbeth hit us where we live.

Much of the play's coldness, of course, began with Shakespeare, creator of a pair of central characters who turn bad so quickly that you can hardly believe your ears. In Orlando, Jean Tafler makes a hard, sharp-eyed Lady Macbeth, a woman who is all vaulting ambition. And Ian Bedford, a tall, arresting actor with a shaved and tattooed head, swiftly sets aside his rampant sexual energy for a more single-minded, murderous goal.

An elegantly bleak production design sets the tone -- Bob Phillips' spartan octagon in the center of the room, with seating on all four sides around it and, above the actors' heads, great wooden beams pierced by spikes; Denise Warner's martial costumes in somber blacks and grays and reds the color of dried blood.

But elegance doesn't draw us in, and neither, unfortunately, do the cadre of actors playing soldiers (thanes and generals and their offspring), many of whom don't really register as individuals or make their meanings clear. There are exceptions, of course -- Steven Patterson's genial Duncan, Timothy Williams' lucid Ross, Paul Bernardo's suspicious Banquo (and later his grinning, bloody ghost) and most of all Eric Zivot's fury-driven Macduff. But too many others make little impression, and there are long discussions during which we may wonder what on earth they're talking about.

Anne Hering makes a wonderfully bawdy Porter (a beautifully unconventional bit of casting) and a moving force as the besieged Lady Macduff. But she plays at least a couple of other characters, and her reappearance so often begins to seem comical. Young Owen Teague does a fine job as the little Macduff son, and the three witches -- played by Erin Cameron-Beute, Jennifer Drew and Jennie Sirianni -- are suitably creepy.

Much of that creepiness works, especially the ritualistic killings (although it's a little peculiar to see the murderers pause to wipe up the blood). But there's something distancing about a Macbeth so monomaniacal and a Macbeth so coolly grim. "I must feel it as a man," says Macduff when he is admonished to avenge his family's deaths. So, too, must we.

Showtimes Sponsors

Margeson Theater

- Wed & Thurs: 7 p.m.

- Fri & Sat: 8 p.m.

- Sun: 2 p.m.

- Previews: Wednesday, April 2 & Thursday, April 3 at 7 p.m.

- Senior Matinees: Wednesday, April 16 at 2 p.m.

Regions
Calrton Fields
Keating & Schlitt, P.A.
Orlando Shakespeare Theater Guild
Albertsons
Radio One/Motorola
The City of Orlando
Southern Printing
TKO Advertising
WESH-TV2
WLOQ

Preview Video
Dramatis Personae

DUNCAN'S HOUSEHOLD
- Duncan, King of Scotland: Steven Patterson*
- Malcolm, son to Duncan: Benjamin Cole
- Donalbain, son to Duncan: Corey Loftus
- Lennox, Thane of Scotland: Joe Kemper
- Ross, Thane of Scotland: Timothy Williams*
- Angus, Thane of Scotland: Chantry Banks
- Banquo, general of the King's Army: Paul Bernardo*
- Fleance, young son to Banquo: Owen Teague
- A Priest: Bob Dolan*

MACBETH'S HOUSEHOLD

- Macbeth, Thane of Glamis, later Cawdor & King: Ian Bedford*
- Lady Macbeth: Jean Tafler*
- The Porter: Anne Hering*
- Murderer 1/Seyton: Michael Gill
- Murderer 2/Servant: Chris Bellinger
- Murderer 3/Servant: Brian McNally
- A Doctor: Steven Patterson*
- Gentlewoman of Lady Macbeth: Anne Hering*

MACDUFF'S FAMILY

- Macduff, Thane of Scotland: Eric Zivot*
- Lady Macduff: Anne Hering*
- Boy, son to Macduff: Owen Teague

THE ENGLISH

- Siward, general of the English forces: Bob Dolan*
- Young Siward, his son: Corey Loftus
- Caithness, soldier in the English Army: Paul Bernardo*

THE UNDERWORLD

- Hecate, Queen of the Witches: Anne Hering*
- Witch 1: Erin Cameron-Beute
- Witch 2: Jennifer Drew
- Witch 3: Jennie Sirianni*
- Apparitions: Chantry Banks, Chris Bellinger, Paul Bernardo*, Bob Dolan*, Anne Hering*, Corey Loftus, Brian McNally, Steven Patterson*, Owen Teague, and Eric Zivot*

Understudies
- Macbeth: Joe Kemper
- Lady Macbeth: Jennifer Drew
- Lady MacDuff/Porter/Hecate/Gentlewoman: Erika Wilhite
- Banquo/ Malcolm: Brian McNally
- Fleance/MacDuff's Son/First Murderer/Seyton/Bloody Sergeant/Servant: Corey Loftus
- MacDuff/Ross/Angus(Caithness)/Lennox/Lord/Old Siward/Old Man/Duncan/Doctor: Chris Bellinger
- The Three Witches: Amanda Wansa
- Donalbain/Young Siward/1st and 2nd Messengers/Servants: Michael Beaman
Production Team
- Director: Jim Helsinger
- Associate Director: David Karl Lee
- Scenic Designer: Bob Phillips**
- Lighting Designer: Bert Scott **
- Costume Designer: Denise Warner
- Sound Designer: Matthew Given
- Stage Manager: Amy Nicole Davis*
- Assistant Stage Managers: Rachel K. Moll, Annie Simpson & Andrea Wylie
- Special Effects: Mary Heffernan
- Light Board Operator: Amy Hadley
- Sound Board Operator: Justin Sanchack
- Wardrobe : AraBella Fischer & Erin Rodgers
- Assistant Director: Michael Gerber
- Butoh Choreographer: Christopher Odo
- Fight Choreographer: Tony Simotes
- Fight Captain: Benjamin Cole
*Denotes a member of Actors' Equity Association **Denotes a member of United Scenic Artists