ANTONY AND CLEOPATRA Opens at Seattle Shakespeare Company, Now thru 11/18

ANTONY-AND-CLEOPATRA-Opens-at-Seattle-Shakespeare-Company-20010101

Seattle Shakespeare Company opens its new season at The Playhouse at Seattle Center with the epic romance Antony and Cleopatra. Director John Langs, who staged the company's block-buster production of Hamlet, helms the legendary and tragic affair of two charismatic world leaders caught between their own desires and the duty they owe their country.

Tickets to Antony and Cleopatra are available now through the Seattle Shakespeare Company Box Office at 206-733-8222 as well as online at www.seattleshakespeare.org.

"At its center, to me, there is a terrific love story and a mature love story, and really, really passionate love story," said Langs at the first rehearsal for the play. "I say mature, not because of the age. I think it's because these two people have seen the world and they own the world, in their own way. And that comes with an enormous amount of life experience, a tremendous ego, and a sense of responsibility that I think few of us can understand. Although all of us, I think, experience it in little ways and that makes the play very universal. Antony has been given responsibility to run the world, and yet he finds the love of a lifetime in another person, and that person happens to be Cleopatra, who...well, she's not easy, but she's worth it, and I think he thinks so too."

Antony and Cleopatra takes place after the fall of Julius Caesar and the defeat of his assassins. Now the power over the Roman Empire rests with three people: Octavius Caesar, Lepidus, and Mark Antony. After a trip to the Eastern Empire, Antony falls in love with Cleopatra, the queen of Egypt. The young general Pompey, bent on avenging his father's death, prepares to go to war with Rome. Antony, against the wishes of his beloved Cleopatra, returns to Italy to face Pompey and try to repair his fraying relations with Octavius. Pompey fears Antony's genius as a general and presses for peace. Octavius overcomes his own fear of Antony, and in an attempt to cement their friendship, marries him to his sister Octavia. Cleopatra, hearing of the marriage, is consumed with jealously, but Antony soon deserts his new wife to return to his queen. This insult gives Octavius an excuse to attack Egypt. After several battles he is the final victor, and Antony, in despair, attempts to commit suicide by falling on his own sword. Cleopatra takes refuge in her mausoleum, where Antony is brought to her and dies in her arms. Fearing she will be captured and paraded through the streets of Rome, Cleopatra procures some snakes hidden in a basket of fruit, and with the help of their venomous bites, she puts an end to her life.

Husband and wife actors Hans Altwies and Amy Thone play the lovers and leaders Antony and Cleopatra. Altwies and Thone played opposite one another in Seattle Shakespeare Company's Wooden O production of Much Ado About Nothing in 2010. Also featured in the cast are: Sydney Andrews (Octavia), Mike Dooly (Pompey), Darragh Kennan (Octavius Caesar), Dan Kremer (Lepidus), and Charles Leggett (Enobarbus).

Seattle Shakespeare Company presents Antony and Cleopatra, tonight, November 1-18, 2012 (Previews November 1; Opening Night Friday November 2), Wednesday-Saturday at 7:30 PM with selected Saturdays at 2PM and selected Sundays at 2PM and 7:30PM.

CAST (in alphabetical order)

Hans Altwies.................................................... Mark Antony
Justin Alley...................................................... Ventidius/ensemble
Sydney Andrews.............................................. Octavia/ensemble
John Bogar...................................................... Meacenas/ensemble
Mike Dooly...................................................... Pompey/ensemble
Daniel Guttenberg............................................ Soothsayer/ensemble
Anne-Marie Jones............................................ Octavia understudy
Darragh Kennan............................................... Octavius Caesar
Dan Kremer..................................................... Lepidus/Clown
Charles Leggett................................................ Enobarbus
Jason Marr...................................................... Scarus/ensemble
Chris Maslen.................................................... Menas/Thidias
Alex Matthews................................................. Eros/ensemble
Nick Rempel.................................................... Aggripa/ensemble
Joseph Anderson Shaw.................................... Messenger/ensemble
Matt Shimkus................................................... Candidus/ensemble
Adam Standley................................................ Alexas
Allison Strickland............................................. Iras
Amy Thone...................................................... Cleopatra
Terri Weagant................................................... Charmian

DESIGN TEAM

Jennifer Zeyl.................................................... Scenic Designer
Pete Rush........................................................ Costume Designer
Geoff Korf....................................................... Lighting Designer
Robertson Witmer and Evan Mosher................. Co-Sound Designers
Megan Tuschhoff............................................. Properties Designer
Mollye Maxner.................................................. Movement/Dance Choreographer
Barney Hammond............................................. Vocal/Text Director

The show plays Playhouse at Seattle Center, 201 Mercer Street, Seattle, Wash. Tickets to Antony and Cleopatra are now on sale and range from $22-$45 for adults and $22-$30 for seniors and students. A Pay-What-You-Will preview is on October 31 at 7:30 PM. Discount tickets are available for groups of ten or more. For ticket, call the Seattle Shakespeare Company box office (206) 733-8222 or go online at www.seattleshakespeare.org.

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