Theatre@First to Present THE KNIGHT OF THE BURNING PESTLE, 4/23-5/2

Theatre@First continues its exciting eleventh season with Francis Beaumont's timeless satire The Knight of the Burning Pestle at Unity Somerville, April 23 - May 2, 2015. Mary Parker directs this overlooked Elizabethan gem that blends Shakespearean-style comedy with a surprising modern flavor.

The Knight of the Burning Pestle tramples the fourth wall when a Citizen (Brian Edgar) and his Wife (Melissa Ehlers) rush the stage, interrupting a play-within-a-play just as it begins. They create the new role of a knight errant, played by their apprentice Rafe (Fabiana Cabral). The show's original actors struggle onward with the tale of Jasper Merrythought (Brian Keller) and his forbidden lover Lucy (Amanda Dausman), while Rafe defeats a giant and tangles himself in his own love story. Two plots competing with one another keep this fast-moving 17th century comedy witty, sharp, and full of laughs.

First performed in 1607, The Knight of the Burning Pestle is one of the lesser-known plays from an era dominated by Shakespeare and Marlow. The play was recently performed at Shakespeare's Globe in London and seems to be staging a modern comeback in the theatrical canon. Theatre@First's outstanding cast of newcomers and veterans promises to give Beaumont's chivalric satire its due.

Theatre@First is excited to include special performances of The Knight of the Burning Pestle to accommodate the needs of our audience. Autism-Friendly night (Thursday, April 30th at 8pm) will facilitate the enjoyment of the show by theatre-goers on the autism spectrum or who have other sensory issues. The show will be altered to improve the visual and audio experience for these patrons as well as offering a Quiet Room with streaming audio from the show for those who are more comfortable in this setting. On Saturday, May 2nd at 2pm, Theatre@First will also offer a special parent-friendly performance. Children under 12 will be admitted for $5 each to watch the show or play with experienced caregivers upstairs while the parents enjoy the performance.

Since its founding in 2003, Theatre@First has produced more than thirty main-stage shows, as well as cabarets, Shakespeare slams, and a popular series of staged readings. A vital part of the thriving Somerville arts scene, Theatre@First draws on the talent and support of individuals and organizations throughout our community to provide affordable, quality theatre in a variety of local venues. For tickets and more information about Theatre@First, please visit www.theatreatfirst.org.

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