ROMEO AND JULIET Plays Connecticut Rep, Now thru 12/9


Connecticut Repertory Theatre (CRT) will present William Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet, tonight, November 29 – December 9 in the Nafe Katter Theatre, Storrs. For tickets and information, call 860-486-2113 and visit

This timeless tale of "star-cross'd lovers" fills the stage with dizzying swordplay and delightful wordplay. From the first blush of forbidden teenage love, to the blooming of a passion that fuels death itself, Shakespeare's classic love story thrills anew in every generation. In the heat of a raging feud between their two households, teenagers Romeo and Juliet lose their hearts to each other in a chance meeting. With a price on Romeo's head, and Juliet suddenly betrothed to another man, the young lovers share a night of forbidden passion before Romeo flees the city. Juliet's desperate pleas to call off the wedding are denied, and she hatches a secret plan for them to be reunited, with devastating consequences. Connecticut Repertory Theatre winds up 2012 with a play as passionate, comic and frightening as love itself.

For more than 400 years, William Shakespeare's first tragedy Romeo and Juliet has enthralled audiences worldwide. The powerful tragedy is one of the most frequently staged of the Bard's works -- inspiring a Broadway musical, two operas, numerous ballet and dance interpretations, and more than 60 film and television adaptations.

Artistic Director Vincent J. Cardinal said, "Romeo and Juliet is, indeed, a story for the ages. Each generation has seen these young lovers from the unique perspectives of their times. It is the layering of time that has influenced our approach to this production. It is, at first blush, a production firmly rooted in 16th century Italy. The costume silhouettes and the scenic elements are those of Verona in the late 1500s, but the details – an iPod, fluorescent lights, an ancient fresco, a song with synthesizer – emerge as messengers from their eras. It is, after all, a story that we tell today, informed fully by our collective history."

Romeo and Juliet transcend time and place. This production will feature Renaissance and contemporary elements to tell Shakespeare's masterful love story, where two young lovers insist on each other despite the intractable conflict between their two houses. It is a world where young people are cast into a cycle of violence perpetuated by their parents, with catastrophic results. It is a story that is as relevant in 21st century America as it was in 16th century Europe, and likely for all time.

Vincent J. Cardinal (Artistic Director, Head, Dept. of Dramatic Arts) has served as Director of the Performing Arts Center at Adelphi University , Artistic Director of the Jerry Herman Ring Theatre in Coral Gables, FL and Director of Off-Broadway's Circle Repertory Company School of Theater. He graduated in Playwriting from the Yale School of Drama where he was honored with the ASCAP-Cole Porter Award for Best-Collected Work. His play, The Colorado Catechism, premiered at Circle Repertory Company; the Los Angeles premiere garnered Dramalogue Awards for actors TimoThy Daly and Amy Van Nostrand. Cardinal's play King Dusyanta: A Tale from Kalidasa premiered at the Oasis Theater Company starring André DeShields. Cardinal directed Eileen Gallindo's Multicultural Disorder for Next Stage, NY, Joe Fox's Prism View at New Dramatists and Paul Corrigan's Queens Blvd. in a commercial off-Broadway run. Cardinal directed Guys and Dolls, My Fair Lady, Spring Awakening: The Musical, Man of La Mancha and The Odd Couple for Connecticut Repertory Theatre.

The Production team includes: Gregory Webster, Fight Choreographer, Marie Boyette, Choreographer, Matt Iacozza, Scenic Designer; Angela Armijo and Fan Zhang, Costume Designers; Billy Albertelli, Lighting Designer; and Steve Magro, Sound Designer.

Will Haden (Romeo) is a 2nd year MFA actor. Credits include: CRT – O Beautiful (Jesus), The Winter's Tale (Florizel); Hope Summer Rep. - Pride and Prejudice (Mr. Darcy), An Inspector Calls (Inspector Goole); Graduate Acting Project - King Lear (Edgar); Village Playhouse - Xanadu (Sonny), Mauritius (Dennis), The Little Dog Laughed (Alex).

Hannah Kaplan (Juliet) is a senior BFA Actor. Credits Include - CRT: O Beautiful (Alice Fletcher), The Winter's Tale (Mopsa), I'm Connecticut (Virginia), Our Town (Rebecca Gibbs), Pride and Prejudice (Mary Bennet), The Last Days of Judas Iscariot (Henrietta Iscariot), and the Nutmeg Summer Series production of Guys and Dolls. Other Credits include: To Kill a Mockingbird, The Miracle Worker, Blood Wedding, The Santaland Diaries, Chicago, and James and the Giant Peach. This past summer Hannah trained at the Michael Howard Studios in New York City.

Nora Chester (Nurse) just completed a highly successful Off-Broadway revival of Brian Friel's Lovers with The Actors Company Theatre (TACT), where she is a company member. Other Off-Broadway appearances include Eccentricities of a Nightingale, The Sea, The Triangle Factory Fire Project and Pagans. Other New York credits include Abingdon Theatre, Playwrights Horizons, Direct Theatre, New Dramatists and Project Shaw. Regional credits include: Actors Theatre of Louisville, The Alliance, Alley Theatre, The Asolo, The Attic Theare, Delaware Theatre Company, GeVa, Long Wharf, McCarter, Syracuse Stage, Stage West, and twenty-one summer seasons at The Monomoy Theatre on Cape Cod.

Richard Ruiz (Friar Laurence) UConn Alum 98, proudly returns to CRT after playing Sancho in last summer's Man of La Mancha. Off-Broadway he has appeared in Two Gentlemen of Verona for The Public Theatre. National tours include: Sweet Charity, Urinetown, Man of La Mancha and Jesus Christ Superstar. Regionally he has appeared in Cyrano (Folger Shakespeare, DC), Tis Pity She's a Whore (Baltimore Center Stage), The Mystery of Irma Vep (Intiman Theatre), Guys and Dolls (Long Wharf Theatre), Moby Dick: Rehearsed (Berkshire Theatre Festival), Candide (Arden Theatre, PA), Love's Labour's Lost (Connecticut Repertory Theatre), Treasure Island (People's Light and Theatre, PA), A Midsummer Night's Dream (Two Rivers Theatre, NJ), The Music Man (Lyric Theatre, OK), Picasso at the Lapin Agile (Theatre Virginia), and The Winter's Tale and American Night: The Ballad of Juan José (Yale Repertory Theatre).

The cast will feature MFA actors: Thomas Brazzle, Darek Burkowski, Anthony Goes, Will Haden, James Jelkin, Olivia Saccomanno , and Sarah Wintermeyer; as well as BFA actors: Saul Alvarez, Gabriel Aprea, Marisa Desa, Conor Donally, Thomas Dubinski, Kaitlyn Gorman, Will Graziano, Shane Tyler Harris, Darrell Hollens, Michael Improta, Hannah Kaplan, Alejandro Lopez, Ryan Marcone, John Manning, Andrea Pane, Coles Prince, Gina Salvatore, and Adam Schneemann.

Call 860-486-2113 for tickets or for more information. Call or visit the box office for specific show dates and times because performance schedules vary and are subject to change. Tickets available online at

New Show Locations –Romeo & Juliet will be performed in the Nafe Katter Theatre. In the spring semester, His Girl Friday will be performed in the Nafe Katter Theatre and the spring musical Hairspray in the Harriet S. Jorgensen. This is a change from previous years. The theatre location is always printed on the tickets, so ticket holders should always check their tickets before heading to the theatre.

New Box Office Location – Please note that the CRT box office is now housed in the Nafe Katter Theatre, located at 820 Bolton Road. There is short term parking on Bolton Road, in the loading zone directly in front of the theatre. CRT tickets can no longer be purchased at the Jorgensen box office. CRT's box office is open Monday-Friday, noon – 5 p.m., and will also be open one hour prior to show time at the theatre where the performance is taking place.

Weeknight evening performances start at 7:30 p.m. Weekend evening performances start at
8 p.m. Matinee performances start at 2 p.m. Ticket prices range from $6 - $30.

CRT is the professional producing arm of the Department of Dramatic Arts at the University of Connecticut, Storrs. CRT productions are directed, designed by, and cast with visiting professional artists, including Equity actors, faculty members, and the department's most advanced student artists. The synergy between professional and advanced student artists creates extraordinary theatre and a unique learning environment.

Pictured: Mercutio (Andrea Pane, left), Romeo (Will Haden, center) and Benvolio (Ryan Marcone). Photo Credit: Bob Copley.

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