Photo Flash: First Look at Midsommer Flight's Holiday Show TWELFTH NIGHT
Midsommer Flight continues its fifth season of free Shakespeare programming, presenting a remount of last year's hit, a free indoor production of the comedy Twelfth Night, by William Shakespeare, directed by Midsommer Flight's Producing Artistic Director Beth Wolf and music directed by Midsommer Flight's Resident Music Director Elizabeth Rentfro in partnership with the Lincoln Park Conservatory. Dedicated to presenting high quality, accessible productions of Shakespeare's plays, Midsommer Flight is a proud arts partner with the Chicago Park District. BroadwayWorld has a first look at the cast in action below!
The "bright and joyful" (Chicago Reader) Twelfth Night takes the audience to Illyria, where a shipwrecked Viola disguises herself as a boy to work for the Duke Orsino. She promptly falls in love with him, who in turn loves the fair lady Olivia. Misunderstandings and misplaced love abound in this delightful comedy with "flowing, dreamlike direction" (NewCity) by Wolf. The title of the play refers to the "twelfth night of Christmas" and some historians believe the play was originally written and performed for the holiday. Midsommer Flight's production marks the company as "an artistic force" (NewCity) and provides a free, family-friendly activity to Chicagoans for the holiday season and a unique experience amongst other holiday offerings in Chicago.
The play also features original music composed by Midsommer Flight's Resident Music Director Elizabeth Rentfro, and arranged by many of the original cast members. Rentfro also composed music for the company's summer production of As You Like It earlier this year. "Exploring and creating the sound of Illyria was a collaborative process between me, the director and the performers," Rentfro adds. "It's so exciting to reunite this group of talented actor/musicians, who will sing and play guitar, mandolin, flute and other instruments live onstage during the performance." Midsommer Flight's original music will be available to purchase on CD at performances, and is also currently available online on iTunes, Amazon, GooglePlay, Spotify and more.
Most of the original cast will return to remount the production this winter. This year's full cast features Kim Egan, "Valentine" and others; Meredith Ernst*, "Viola; Adam Habben*, "Andrew Aguecheek;" Kanome' Jones*, "Olivia;" Jake Jones, "Sebastian;" Nick Loumos, "Orsino;" Martel Manning*, "Malvolio;" Alex Mauney, "Feste;" Ian Michael Minh, "Curio," "Sea Captain" and others; Elizabeth Rentfro*, "Maria;" Erick Rivera, "Officer 1" and others; Chris Smith*, "Toby Belch;" Jeremy Thompson, "Antonio" and others, and Maureen Yasko, "Fabian" and others. Production staff includes Beth Wolf*, director; Dylan S. Roberts*, associate director; Chad Bay, assistant director; Elizabeth Rentfro*, music director; Chris Smith*, fight choreographer; Elizabeth Shorrock, costume designer, and Robin Waisanen, stage manager. *denote Midsommer Flight ensemble members.
Midsommer Flight's early winter production of Twelfth Night is presented in the Show House room at the Lincoln Park Conservatory, 2391 N. Stockton Dr., December 1 - 18. There is a preview performance Thursday, Dec. 1 at 7:30 p.m., with press opening Friday, Dec. 2 at 7:30 p.m. The regular performance schedule is Thursdays - Sundays at 7:30 p.m. and running time is 100 minutes. Performances are free and open to the public although donations are gratefully accepted. Reservations are encouraged due to limited seating and will be available online beginning in October. For more information or to make a reservation, visit www.midsommerflight.com.
Alex Mauney as 'Feste'
Elizabeth Rentfro as 'Maria'
Erick Rivera as attendant/musician