CSC Begins MACBETH Previews, Announces Timothy Douglas As Director Of Upcoming FRANKENSTEIN
Classic Stage Company kicks off its 2019-20 season on Thursday, October 10, when previews begin for artistic director John Doyle's new staging of William Shakespeare's Macbeth, opening October 27 and running through December 15 at the Lynn F. Angelson Theater at CSC (136 E. 13th St, New York).
Today CSC announces that Timothy Douglas will direct Tristan Bernays' retelling of Frankenstein (beginning January 30), which the company will pair with Kate Hamill's reimagining of Dracula (starting January 14), directed by Sarna Lapine, to form a thrilling repertory cycle of adaptations of two legendary Gothic nightmares by emerging playwrights.
Shakespeare's terrifying tale of revenge, murder, and madness, Macbeth traces the fallout when the darkest side of humanity cheats its way into a position of power. Its protagonists' violent ambition is famously aroused by a prophecy delivered by a group of witches, and the play has proven historically prophetic: Shakespeare's portrait of the psychology of tyranny has found itself in unsettling dialogue with societies around the world time and again. The foreboding environment of "The Scottish Play" is particularly familiar to director John Doyle, who attended school in the shadow of the play's setting, the real-life Cawdor Castle, in Inverness, Scotland.
In addition to real-life husband and wife Corey Stoll and Nadia Bowers as Macbeth and Lady Macbeth, the production features Barzin Akhavan as Macduff, Raffi Barsoumian as Malcolm, N'Jameh Camara as Lady Macduff, Erik Lochtefeld as Banquo, Mary Beth Peil as Duncan, Barbara Walsh as Ross, and Antonio Michael Woodard as Fleance and Young Macduff.
The creative team includes John Doyle (Production Scenic Design), Ann Hould-Ward (Costume Design), Solomon Weisbard (Lighting Design), Matt Stine (Sound Design), Telsey + Company (Casting), Bernita Robinson (Production Stage Manager), and Stephanie Macchia (Assistant Stage Manager).
John Doyle has created a scenic design, and Jane Cox and Tess James a lighting plot, that will remain throughout 2019-2020 CSC season, bookended by Macbeth and a new production of Assassins that completes the trilogy of Sondheim/Weidman musicals John Doyle has directed (April-June 2020). In addition, each individual production will have creative teams providing production-specific design.
Between Macbeth and Assassins, CSC produces two adaptations of canonical horror works-based on Bram Stoker's Dracula and Mary Shelley's Frankenstein-in repertory. Widely known as a pair of macabre fantasies about blood-sucking vampires and man-made monsters, these two stories more truly scratch at the fundamental human fears of love and betrayal, while exposing the even truer horrors of basic human nature. Kate Hamill, 2017 Wall Street Journal "Playwright of the Year" and one of the US' 10 Most Produced Playwrights of the 2018-2019 season, offers a terrifying and riotous adaptation new take on Dracula in which she confronts the sexism in Bram Stoker's original work and subjugates it as a smart and disquieting feminist revenge fantasy. The production, staged by Sarna Lapine, also features Hamill as Renfield and runs January 14 - March 15, 2020 at CSC.
Tristan Bernays' Frankenstein is an electrifying metaphysical adaptation strongly rooted in the tradition of theatrical storytelling. Athletically performed by only two actors, this exhilarating retelling of Mary Shelley's beloved novel boldly explores the creation myth while dissecting some of the most frightening aspects of the human psyche. The production will be helmed by Timothy Douglas, whose previous Off-Broadway credits include Yellowman, Brönte: A Portrait Of Charlotte, Rosmersholm, and has also garnered acclaim directing the world premieres of August Wilson's Radio Golf (Yale Rep), Jason Reynolds' Long Way Down (Kennedy Center), Robert O'Hara's Etiquette Of Vigilance (Steppenwolf), Rajiv Joseph's The Lake Effect (Silk Road Rising), and Keith Josef Adkins' Safe House (Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park). Performances of Frankenstein take place January 30 - March 15, 2020.
About Timothy Douglas
Timothy Douglas (Director, Frankenstein). Off Broadway: Yellowman, Brönte: A Portrait Of Charlotte, Rosmersholm. Regional: the world premieres of August Wilson's Radio Golf (Yale Rep), Jason Reynolds' Long Way Down (Kennedy Center), Robert O'Hara's Etiquette Of Vigilance (Steppenwolf), Rajiv Joseph's The Lake Effect (Silk Road Rising), and Keith Josef Adkins' Safe House (Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park). His recent Arena Stage production of Ayad Akhtar's Disgraced also played Shanghai's Great Theatre of China. Additional projects for A.C.T., Actors Theatre of Louisville (associate artistic director), Berkeley Rep, Downstage (New Zealand), Folger Shakespeare, Guthrie, Juilliard School, Mark Taper Forum (director in residence), National Theatret (Norway), New Dramatists (resident director), Portland Center Stage, Red Bull, Round House, South Coast Rep, Sundance, Woolly Mammoth, and many others. He is a recipient of the Lloyd Richards Director Award from the National Black Theatre Festival, and most recently appointed Distinguished Artist in Residence at Emerson College. MFA Yale School of Drama. timothydouglas.org
Macbeth Schedule and Tickets
Performances of Macbeth take place at the Lynn F. Angelson Theater at Classic Stage Company (136 E. 13th St, New York) October 10 - December 15: Tuesdays - Thursdays at 7pm; Fridays at 8pm; Saturdays at 2pm and 8pm; and Sundays at 2pm. There is an added performance Wednesday, November 27, at 2pm, and no performances on Thanksgiving (Thursday, November 28) or the day after Thanksgiving (Friday, November 29).
Tickets are $75 October 10-26 and $80 October 28-December. $125 prime seats are available at all performances. Tickets and membership packages can be purchased at classicstage.org or 212.352.3101 (or toll free 866.811.4111).
Macbeth Classic Perspectives Talkback Series
This season, CSC offers a new talkback series, Classic Perspectives, launching with Macbeth. With the initiative, the company expands its programming of post-show conversations, which have always been an integral part of the CSC audience experience. For each production going forward, CSC will offer talks on a variety of relevant topics, featuring theatrical and other scholars, as well as more traditional events with members of the cast and creative team offering behind-the-scenes details. CSC's symposiums and director-led talkbacks will now a part of this series, too. Classic Perspectives talks for Macbeth include:
Classic Perspectives: Behind the Scenes
Wednesday, October 16 (after the 7pm performance)
Join members of the cast and creative team for one of our traditional post-performance talkbacks offering a more detailed look at the show's creative process, moderated by CSC Artistic Director John Doyle.
Classic Perspectives: Saturday Symposium
Saturday, November 9 (after the 2pm performance)
Take in a special post-matinee chat with scholars and experts about Shakespeare and Macbeth. This panel will take an in-depth look at the dramaturgical and production history of the play.
Classic Perspectives: Women of Shakespeare
Sunday, November 3 (after the 2pm performance)
Using characters like Lady Macbeth and Lady Macduff as a launching point, this post-show talk between John Doyle and Phyllida Lloyd (known for directing the all-female Shakespeare Trilogy: The Tempest, Julius Caesar, Henry IV) will explore the power of women in Shakespeare. They'll uncover how female roles in classic works relate to feminism, politics, and women's issues today.
Classic Perspectives: Superstition and Shakespeare
Thursday, December 5 (after the 7pm performance)
Is "The Scottish Play" truly cursed? Why do some people refuse to say Macbeth in a theater? Are the witches in the play chanting actual spells? Join us after the play as we attempt to answer these questions and discuss theatrical superstitions and the supernatural legacy of this great work.