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Shakespeare Hits Stage and Screen in Fall 2013

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Several high profile Shakespearean productions gear up to hit stages and movie theatres around the globe in the latter months of 2013. Here is a preview of three of the most anticipated events to watch for in the coming months.

For the first time in 36 years, ROMEO AND JULIET will play on Broadway later this summer. Previews begin August 26 at the Richard Rodgers Theatre. Orlando Bloom and Condola Rashad take on the lead roles as the ill-fated lovers in a production directed by five-time Tony nominee David Leveaux. A cast featuring black actors as the Capulets and white actors as the Montagues will add racial tension and contemporary relevance to this classic tale of young lovers divided by deep-seated family hatreds.

David Tennant stars as RICHARD II at the Royal Shakespeare Company in Stratford-upon-Avon beginning October 10. The former DOCTOR WHO actor is joined in the cast by Michael Pennington as John of Gaunt and Oliver Ford Davies as the Duke of York. In his inaugural season as RSC Artistic Director, Gregory Doran directs the production, which traces the downfall of an ineffectual king. Tickets sold out months in advance; however, the production will be live streamed globally on November 15.

Another sold out production, this one starring Kenneth Branagh as MACBETH, will play in movie theatres to worldwide audiences in October and November. Branagh takes on his first Shakespearean role in over a decade in this critically acclaimed production, currently playing at the Manchester International Festival. Co-directed by Branagh and Tony winner Rob Ashford, the production co-stars Alex Kingston as Lady Macbeth. Branagh has drawn rave reviews for his portrayal of the Scottish military leader turned assassin.

Photo: Orlando Bloom and Condola Rashad as Romeo and Juliet

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Debra Charlton Debra Charlton is the author of Holistic Shakespeare: An Experiential Learning Approach (Intellect Books 2012). Her reviews and articles on Shakespeare training and performance have appeared in numerous publications. Most recently, her chapter on Sarah Bernhardt was published in Women in the Arts in the Belle Epoque (MacFarland 2012).

Debra Charlton received her Ph.D. from the University of Texas at Austin with a specialization in Shakespearean theatre.  She joined the faculty of Texas State University in 1999 where she served as Director of Graduate Studies in Theatre until 2013. At Texas State, she established and supervised the production dramaturgy program at Texas State, and founded a summer Shakespeare intensive in Stratford-upon-Avon, UK.

Dr. Charlton began her career as a professional actor at Houston’s Alley Theatre.  She has since directed many productions, including King Lear, The Taming of the Shrew, Romeo and Juliet, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Blood Wedding, The Importance of Being Earnest, and The Winter’s Tale.   She has also worked as a production dramaturg on many plays, including Macbeth, Much Ado About Nothing, Measure for Measure, Twelfth Night, Oklahoma!, A Little Night Music, Arcadia, The Art of Dining, and The Learned Ladies.