THE TEMPEST Opens at Pennsylvania Shakespeare Festival Tonight, 6/22

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Shakespeare's last play, The Tempest, is the first of three Shakespeare plays to open during the Pennsylvania Shakespeare Festival's 21st season. The Tempest opens tonight, June 22 in the Schubert Theatre at the Labuda Center for the Performing Arts on the Center Valley campus of DeSales University and runs through July 15.

Appearing in his 19th season with the Pennsylvania Shakespeare Festival, Greg Wood takes the stage as Prospero. Wood has starred in many shows throughout his PSF career, including Claudius in last year's Hamlet (he previously played the title role in PSF's 1995 production), Richard in Richard III, Cyrano in Cyrano de Bergerac, and countless of other leading roles.

Banished from his dukedom by his usurping brother, Prospero lords over an enchanted isle and raises a tempest that shipwrecks his enemies on its shores. When his beloved daughter Miranda falls in love with one of the castaways, Prospero is reawakened to the better angels of his nature.

Jim Helsinger, who has directed and acted at the Festival for 16 seasons, directs a cast that includes many PSF veterans. Alan Coates and Carl N. Wallnau appear as Alonso and Antonio respectively. Richard B. Watson appears as the earth monster Caliban. Steven Dennis and Wayne S. Turney play Sebastian and Gonzalo, and Eric Hissom and Brad DePlanche serve as Stephano and Trinculo. Among the several newcomers to the Festival are Kelsey Formost as Miranda and Dameka Hayes as the spirit Ariel. Brandon Meeks appears as Ferdinand.

Bob Phillips has designed the mysterious island where the tempest strikes. Sam Fleming has designed the costumes and Thom Weaver, the lighting. Matthew Given serves as the resident sound designer for the Festival, and Stacy Renee Norwood serves as the production stage manager. Martha Ruskai has designed the wigs and make-up, Daniel Levy has created the original compositions for the show, and Dameka Hayes has invented the original Ariel choreography. Wayne S. Turney serves as music director with Magi Ross as masque choreographer.

The show plays the following schedule: 7pm Tuesdays, 8pm Wednesdays through Saturdays, with matinees on Saturdays and Sundays at 2pm(excluding Saturday, June 23rd). One Sunday evening performance is offered at 7:30pm on June 24th.

Single tickets are $25-52; $10 student rush 30 minutes prior to curtain, subject to availability. Single tickets, subscriptions and packages that include tickets to The Tempest are available at www.pashakespeare.org and by contacting the Box Office at 610.282.WILL [9455].

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