Orlando Shakespeare Theater's Next Offerings Will Be OTHELLO and SENSE AND SENSIBILITY

Orlando Shakespeare Theater's Next Offerings Will Be OTHELLO and SENSE AND SENSIBILITY

Orlando Shakespeare Theater in Partnership with UCF (http://www.orlandoshakes.org) presents two treasured and cherished classics – William Shakespeare's Othello and Jane Austen's Sense and Sensibility – in rotating repertory. These works will be presented in the Margeson Theater at the Lowndes Shakespeare Center. Ticket prices range from $17-$40 with discounts available for students, active military, and groups.

Shakespeare's treacherous play, Othello, a gripping thriller of jealousy, passion, and revenge, has never been so alluring. Othello, a celebrated general, yet an outsider, defies social convention and marries Desdemona, a Venetian aristocrat. Enter Othello's most trusted lieutenant, the "honest" Iago, who nurses a vengeful hate for his commander. As Iago draws Othello and the audience into a spider web of half-truths, scandal is fueled – families and friendships destroyed – until a "trifle light as air" tragically unravels them all. Directed by Brian Vaughn, Othello begins previews on Wednesday, January 23, opens Friday, January 25 and runs through Saturday, March 16, 2013.

"Othello is one of Shakespeare's most famous works, and deservedly so. Its examination of race, jealousy and passion are jus as poignant today as they were when he wrote it," said Jim Helsinger, OST's artistic director. "We're so thrilled to bring back Esau Pritchett, who was recently on Broadway in 'A Free Man of Colour' in this exciting new production in the Margeson Theater."

Affairs of the heart take center stage in Jane Austen's Sense and Sensibility in a fresh adaption of the tale by Jon Jory. When a lack of luck makes for difficult marriage prospects, the Dashwood sisters set sail on the volatile seas of courtship. The sisters soon discover that neither reserved Elinor's common sense nor Marianne's impulsive passion offers the key to happiness. Scandalous secrets, burning betrayals, and unexpected twists line the path to true love. Directed by Mark Routhier, Orlando Shakes Director of New Play Development, Sense and Sensibility begins previews on Wednesday, February 6, opens Friday, February 8 and runs through Sunday, March 17, 2013.

"Pride and Prejudice was a large success here a few years ago and I'm really looking forward to working with our great cast on the equally beautiful, funny romance, Sense and Sensibility," said Routhier. "Jane Austen was a sly and elegant writer and Jon Jory's adaptation is fluid and sparkling."

The casts of Othello and Sense and Sensibility feature Orlando Shakes newcomers Martin Yurek as Iago and Colonel Brandon; Piper Patterson as Marianne; John Keller as Roderigo and Edward Ferrars; and Lindsey Kyler as Desdemona and Elinor. The cast of twenty includes returning Orlando Shakes actors Esau Pritchitt as Othello and the Doctor, Suzanne O'Donnell as Emilia and Mrs. John Dashwood, Anne Hering as the Dutchess of Venice and Mrs. Jennings, Joe Vincent as Brabantio and Sir John Middleton, Shannon Michael Wamser as Cassio and Willoughby, and Robin Olson as Lady Middleton; as well as Matthew Natale Rush as Montano, Ron Schneider as Gratiano, Nathan Sebens as Robert Ferrars, Derrick Williams as James, Brandon Alpert as Lodovico, Greg Joubert as John Dashwood, Casey Noble as 1st Senator, Lauren Butler as Bianca, Danielle Gosselin as Lucy Steele, and Kelly Kilgore as Mrs. John Dashwood.

The shows' design team includes costume designers Denise R. Warner (Othello) and Jack A. Smith (Sense and Sensibility), lighting designer Eric T. Haugen, scenic designer Bert Scott, and sound designer Matthew Given.

The Classic Repertory Series is made possible by BB&T, Florida Hospital, OUC, and JetBlue. Orlando Shakespeare Theater in Partnership with UCF is supported by United Arts of Central Florida with funds from the United Arts campaign and by State of Florida, Department of State, Division of Cultural Affairs and the Florida Arts Council.

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