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SHAKESPEARE IN LOVE Tops Off 2017-18 Season at Seattle Shakespeare Company

SHAKESPEARE IN LOVE Tops Off 2017-18 Season at Seattle Shakespeare Company

Intertwining themes of money, power, and love weave through the plays of Seattle Shakespeare Company's upcoming season just announced by Artistic Director George Mount. Plans for the company's 2017-2018 season include Julius Caesar, The Government Inspector, Timon of Athens, The Merchant of Venice, and Shakespeare in Love.

"It's about a continuum of human experience," said Mount. "Being informed about where we've been before to see how we got to now."

The company previously announced its selection for the free Wooden O summer 2017 park shows: Much Ado About Nothing and Pericles.

In the spring of 2018 Seattle Shakespeare Company will tour Twelfth Night and Romeo and Juliet to schools and venues across the state.

"These are essential classic stories for the times we are now living through," said Artistic Director George Mount. "I believe that Shakespeare is contemporary theatre, and should be engaging with the people that are seeing it right now, otherwise, it's just a museum piece. These plays matter now. They mattered then, and they will matter again."

The indoor season launches with Julius Caesar, Shakespeare's gripping political thriller about the intoxicating effects of power. "I'm very interested in revisiting an idea that I first explored with a Wooden O Julius Caesar," said Mount. "When some of the things we're seeing in the culture feel like they are more about regression rather than progress, this will be a production where time moves backwards during the course of the play." Mount will direct Julius Caesar at the Cornish Playhouse, September 13-October 1, 2017.

"My relationship to Allison Narver goes back to the days when she was one of the driving forces behind Annex Theatre," said Mount. "To see all of her great work in town as well as a brilliant staging of the Marx Brother's Animal Crackers at Oregon Shakespeare Festival, I knew she was the perfect fit for this Russian farce. I can't wait." Narver makes her Seattle Shakespeare Company directing debut with Nikolai Gogol's comedy The Government Inspector. The hilarious tale of bureaucracy and buffoonery in a small Russian village will perform at the Center Theatre,October 24-November 19, 2017.

Right after the New Year, the company will present Timon of Athens, Shakespeare's rarely-staged tragedy of a generous man undone by false friendships. John Kazanjian will also make his company debut directing the production which runs at the Center Theatre, January 9-February 4, 2018. "John's been doing some fantastic work on small, chamber versions of Shakespeare's plays with Hamlet and The Tempest at New City Theater," said Mount. "The guy is a treasure trove of creativity with an inventive and smart, East Coast meets West Coast kind of approach to theatre. It's going to be fantastic."

"Desdemona's Measure for Measure for us in 2015 was a nuanced, gorgeous piece of storytelling of a very difficult play," said Mount. "And she's now exploding all over the national scene. I'm thrilled to have her come back and tackle yet another really difficult play that deals with very touchy, sensitive subject matter through the Shakespeare lens. I couldn't be more excited." Chiang will direct The Merchant of Venice, Shakespeare's vibrant interconnected tales of friendship, love, family, and the price of doing business, which will be performed at the Center Theatre, March 20-April 15, 2018.

Shakespeare in Love is a stage adaptation of the Oscar-winning film about young Will Shakespeare and the woman who inspired him. "It's just so bubbly and fun," said Mount who will direct Shakespeare in Love at the Cornish Playhouse, May 2-June 3, 2018. "This is a really entertaining love story and a great examination of what it means to be a theatre artist. It shows just how hard it is when you're trying to make a dream a reality and the difficulties of aspiring to success in any endeavor. I'm really looking forward to jumping into that delightful world with some of our city's great artists." Shakespeare in Love will be part of a city-wide celebration of Shakespeare in the spring of 2018.

The largest audiences for Seattle Shakespeare Company are the more than 16,000 students who get to experience one of the company's touring productions. Seattle Shakespeare Company's touring program crisscrosses the state with two 90-minute, small-cast shows that bring Shakespeare to communities that don't often see professional productions. During the spring of 2018 Twelfth Night and Romeo and Juliet will tour to schools and venues from Pullman to Wenatchee to Port Angeles.

Free Shakespeare in the park is now a summer tradition for much of the region. Seattle Shakespeare Company's Wooden O productions of Much Ado About Nothing and Pericles will perform in parks throughout the region from July 6 through August 6, 2016. The full schedule of dates and venues is available on the company's website.

Season ticket packages will go on sale April 1 and range from $100 to $210 for all five indoor productions. Season ticket packages can be purchased by calling the ticket office at (206) 733-8222 or online at www.seattleshakespeare.org. Single tickets will go on sale in July 2017 and range from $28-$55 per ticket.


WOODEN O SUMMER 2017:

Much Ado About Nothing
By William Shakespeare
Directed by Jon Kretzu
July 6-August 6, 2017
Performed in parks throughout the Puget Sound region

Shakespeare's screwball comedy features the bantering of two of his cleverest characters. For Beatrice and Benedick love is a game of wits played with guarded hearts. Yet everyone can see they're meant for each other. Newly engaged Hero and Claudio conspire to trick the pair into admitting their affections and falling for each other. But schemes are afoot to ruin everyone's happiness through dire accusations. Will love win out in the end?

Pericles
By William Shakespeare
Directed by Annie Lareau
July 6-August 6, 2017
Performed in parks throughout the Puget Sound region

Set sail on the high seas for a summer adventure. Prince Pericles romances maidens, gets chased from port to port, finds his true love, and then loses her and his infant daughter in the storm-tossed sea. With only the stars and his heart as a guide, Pericles charts one man's epic lifetime voyage to reunite with the family he thought he had lost forever.

2017-2018 INDOOR SEASON:

Julius Caesar
By William Shakespeare
Directed by George Mount
September 13-October 1, 2017
Performed at the Cornish Playhouse

After the adoring public raises the charismatic Caesar to power, political factions question the leader's motives and growing influence. Whispers of mutiny rumble through the corridors of power. Brutus and Cassius reach a dire conclusion that will set their country on the edge of collapse.

The Government Inspector
By Nikolai Gogol
Directed by Allison Narver
October 24-November 19, 2017
Performed at the Center Theatre

When small town officials mistake an inventive clerk for an undercover inspector sent to root out corruption, the whole village flies into a tailspin. A comic web of bribery, lies, and rampaging self-delusion entangles everyone in chaos.

Timon of Athens
By William Shakespeare
Directed by John Kazanjian
January 9-February 4, 2018
Performed at the Center Theatre

The popular and wealthy Timon has hordes of friends, but only when the wine is flowing. When his money runs out, Timon turns to his friends for help. One by one they refuse him, and the carefree philanthropist turns to reclusive misanthrope. When fortune shines on him again, will Timon find out who his true friends are?

The Merchant of Venice
By William Shakespeare
Directed by Desdemona Chiang
March 20-April 15, 2018
Performed at the Center Theatre

The wealthy heiress Portia is forced to set her suitors a challenge for her hand in marriage. In order to woo her, Bassiano finances his plan with money borrowed from his friend Antonio. All would be fine except Antonio has taken out a loan from the moneylender Shylock on the assurance that his ships will make it back to the city. They don't, and Shylock demands repayment with a pound of Antonio's flesh.

Shakespeare in Love
Based on the screenplay by Marc Norman and Tom Stoppard
Adapted for the stage by Lee Hall
Directed by George Mount
May 2-June 3, 2018
Performed at the Cornish Playhouse

Young Will Shakespeare is in dire need of inspiration. His next play is on deadline and the only thing he's come up with is the title: Romeo and Ethel, the Pirate's Daughter. Then he meets Viola, a smart and beautiful woman who desperately wants to perform on the stage, even though it's forbidden. Will is smitten and gets inspired to write the greatest love story the world has known.

2018 SPRING TOUR:

Twelfth Night and Romeo and Juliet
By William Shakespeare
Directed by Erin Murray
March-May 2018

Seattle Shakespeare Company's 90-minute touring productions maintain the beauty of Shakespeare's language and introduce these dynamic stories in fresh, accessible productions for students across Washington State. Small-cast ensembles play multiple parts with quick changes and distinctive character choices that make for a showcase of great acting. PR: Jeff Fickes, Communications Director, Seattle Shakespeare Company (206) 733-8228 x214 or JeffF@seattleshakespeare.org. This phone and email are not for publication.


Seattle Shakespeare Company is the Puget Sound region's only year-round professional, classical theatre dedicated to producing the work of Shakespeare. The Company's growing success stems from a deep belief in the power and vibrancy of Shakespeare's words and ideas along with a commitment to artistic excellence on the stage. The results have been provocative performances that both challenge and delight audiences while fostering an appreciation for the greatest playwright the world has ever known. Copyright © 2017 Seattle Shakespeare Company, All rights reserved.
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