Family Friendly Robin Hood Opens at Pennsylvania Shakespeare Festival 6/4-8/7

With a sense of humor equal to their sense of adventure, Robin Hood and his Merry Men pursue villains and victories in the Sherwood Forest in a lively new adaptation on stage at the Pennsylvania Shakespeare Festival June 4 through August 7.

Performance Times: 10am Wednesdays through Saturdays;
10am Tuesdays June 29, July 6, 20, 27 and August 3;
2pm matinees July 27 and 29, and August 3 and 5.
Ticket prices: $15 for adults and $11 for children (12 & under). Seating is general admission.
Discounts are available for groups.
To order: 610-282-WILL or online at

"Our Robin Hood is a family-friendly celebration of a folklore hero - with lots of action and fun," says Erin Hurley, PSF education director who is directing. "The colorful characters bring fact and fable alive in a way that will enchant the young and young-at-heart alike. Maid Marian refuses to be relegated to boredom, and proves she can compete with the manliest of men," Hurley says. "And of course, how could our tale be complete without an archery contest?"

Broadway Fight Director Rick Sordelet - at PSF to direct and stage fights for Romeo and Juliet later in the season- will choreograph the comedic action sequences for Robin Hood.
Set Designer Bob Phillips - a six-time Emmy winner who has provided art direction at "Sesame Street" for 20 years - has created a lush Sherwood Forest full of surprises. Amy Best has designed vibrant folk-tale costumes and Matthew Given has created a soundscape for the storybook forest. Elizabeth M. Zernechel serves as lighting designer.

The cast of 13 features the PSF Acting Intern Company, a select group of DeSales University theatre majors that also works with seasoned professionals from New York, LA, and Philadelphia in other PSF productions. This year's intern company includes veteran interns and new faces. Rising senior Jacob Dresch (Hawley) returns to play Robin Hood, after portraying Octavius Caesar in last season's Antony and Cleopatra. Melissa Egan (Robesonia) -one of the three cast members in last season's inaugural production Shakespeare for Kids- portrays Maid Marian. Marian's best friend, Celia, will be played by Katie Wexler (Emmaus), whose credits last season included Martha Jefferson in 1776 and the title role in Cinderella.

Robin's band of thieves includes graduating senior James Nester (Bethlehem) making his Festival debut as Friar Tuck. Dan Bound-Black (Lansdale), Chris Stevens (Blackwood, NJ), and Christopher McGinnis (Philadelphia) return for another season to play Will Scarlett, Little John, and George respectively. The role of Annie will be played by two actors. Chelsea Anne Carle (Bangor), will play the part through June 30th, when she begins rehearsals for Shakespeare for Kids. Victoria M. Fragnito (Allentown) will then assume the role.

The Sheriff of Nottingham will be played by veteran intern Jonathan Mulhearn (Montgomeryville), who will also play the romantic lead Hero in A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum. Julia Stroup (Media) returns to the intern company to play the role of the widow and intern Henry Gibson (Springfield) will make his Festival debut as Beauford, the widow's son. Kaitlyn Kurowski (Reading) and Emiley Kiser (Greenville, SC) complete the ensemble as cloistered nuns and the Sheriff's bumbling henchmen.

Robin Hood Production Sponsors are Steve and Jane Auvil; The Rider-Pool Foundation, co-sponsors. For more family fun this summer, the Festival also features Shakespeare for Kids, a high-energy one-hour production for children ages 4-10. Ticket prices are $15 for adults and $11 for children (12 & under). Seating is general admission. Discounts are available for groups. Tickets can be ordered by calling 610-282-WILL or online at

The summer season also includes: The Playboy of the Western World (sharing the Schubert stage June 16 - July 3), Sondheim's hysterical musical masterpiece A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum (on the Labuda Main Stage June 23 - July 11), Shakespeare's The Merry Wives of Windsor (July 14 - August 8 in the Schubert), and Romeo and Juliet (on the Main Stage July 21 - August 8). The free outdoor Green Show completes the season's offerings and is performed one hour prior to each evening performance, June 16 - August 7.

The Season Sponsor is Pennsylvania Council on the Arts, a state agency.

The Associate Season Sponsors for the 2010 season are the Harry C. Trexler Trust, The Morning Call, and Service Electric Cable TV & Communications. Director Sponsors are Linda Lapos and Paul Wirth.

The Pennsylvania Shakespeare Festival at DeSales University is the Official Shakespeare Festival of The Commonwealth and a professional, not-for-profit, theatre company. An independent 501 c 3 organization, PSF receives support from DeSales University and relies on contributions from individuals, government agencies, corporations and foundations. PSF is a constituent of the Theatre Communications Group (TCG), the national organization for the American theatre, and a member of the Theatre Alliance of Greater Philadelphia and the Shakespeare Theatre Association of America.

Artists' Biographies

Erin Clare Hurley (Director) is the Festival's Education Director whose directing credits for the annual Linny Fowler WillPower Tour include: Julius Caesar, Much Ado About Nothing, Macbeth, and Hamlet. She has directed the children's productions for the past three years: Cinderella, The Jungle Book, and Winnie the Pooh, along with The Green Show. Acting credits at PSF include Charmian in Antony and Cleopatra, Viola in Twelfth Night. She created the title role in Anne of Green Gables at People's Light and Theatre Company in 2007 and received a Barrymore nomination Outstanding Leading Actress. M.F.A.: Case Western Reserve University, B.A.: DeSales University.

Patrick Mulcahy (Producing Artistic Director, PSF) Since assuming leadership in 2003, Mr. Mulcahy has had the pleasure of stewarding PSF's return to excellence and financial stability, the rebuilding of the professional company of artists, and achieving increasing national recognition for the Festival. Further accomplishments include PSF's first-ever award from the National Endowment for the Arts, and attracting a company of artists including winners and nominees of the Tony, Obie, Emmy, Outer Critics Circle, Drama Desk, Jefferson, and Barrymore awards to the Festival, growth in all income area, and 50% increase in annual attendance, and the expansion of the number of Actors' Equity contracts per season. As a professional director, actor and fight director, credits include Broadway, Off-Broadway, regional theatre, television, and radio. Mr. Mulcahy directed Vera Farmiga in The Real Thing and has acted with Angela Basset, Peter MacNicol, HAl Holbrook Joan Cusack, Don Cheadle, Anne Meara, Milo O'Shea, Cynthia Nixon, Tony Shaloub, Bradley Whitford, and others at the New York Shakespeare Festival, Hartford Stage, The Roundabout Theatre, Great Lakes Theatre Festival, Syracuse Stage, and the Walnut Street Theatre. He served as fight director for Tom Hulse and Timothy Busfield in A Few Good Men on Broadway and for Off-Broadway productions starring John Savage, John Mahoney, Marcia Gay Harden, and Patrick Dempsey. For PSF, he directed Antony and Cleopatra (2009), The Winter's Tale (2007), Henry IV, Part I (2005), The Tempest (1999), and acted in and served as fight director for The Taming of the Shrew (1998) and Julius Caesar (1997). As Head of Acting at DeSales, Patrick directing ten productions for Act 1, including I Hate Hamlet, The Grapes of Wrath, The Foreigner, and The Diary of Anne Frank. He was also the founding director of The Summer Theatre Institute at DeSales University. He holds an M.F.A. from Syracuse University.

Amy Best (Costume Designer) designed last season's The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (Abridged) and Cinderella. She has designed the costumes for Act 1 for the past ten seasons. Amy also served as PSF's production manager in 2006 and 2005. PSF design credits also include Dracula: The Journal of Jonathan Harker, The Jungle Book, Winnie the Pooh, The Green Show, Around the World in 80 Days, The Little Mermaid, Private Lives, Aladdin, Pinocchio, and The Princess and the Pea. Her designs have been seen in and around Chicago, Texas, Kansas, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and England.

Matthew Given (Sound Designer) has designed sound for all of the Festival's productions for the past seven years. This is also his third season as Production Manager. He has also designed at the Orlando Shakespeare Theater, Gala Hispanic Theatre, Rutgers University, and various theatres in New York City. He holds a M.F.A. in sound design from Ohio University.

Bob Phillips (Scenic Designer) designed Cinderella, The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (Abridged), and A Midsummer Night's Dream last season and more than two dozen PSF shows since 1995. Bob celebrated his 16th season as Resident Designer for the Orlando Shakespeare Theatre where he has designer over 66 productions. His television designs include Another World, Search for Tomorrow, and Sesame Street, where he just finished his 21st season and last year became the production designer. Bob has received the Outer Critics Circle, Village, Madison, and Lillian Stoates awards for his stage work and six Emmys for his television designs.

Rick Sordelet (Fight Choreographer) will direct Romeo and Juliet at PSF later this season. He has more than 50 Broadway credits, including the recent revival of Fences and the new musical The Addams Family, as well as Tarzan, Aida, The Lion King, Beauty and the Beast, Curtains, and Cry Baby. His credits also include 47 international productions, and he has staged hundreds of fights for Off Broadway and regional theaters around the country. He was the Fight Director for Cyrano the opera starring Placido Domingo at The Metropolitan Opera, The Royal Opera House, and La Scala in Milan. Film and television credits include The Game Plan starring Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson, Dan in Real Life starring Steve Carell, Juliette Binoche and Dane Cook, Hamlet starring Campbell Scott, and head stunt coordinator for Guiding Light. Rick was honored to receive the 2007 Edith Oliver Award for Sustained Excellence by the Lucille Lortel Foundation. He is a board member for the Shakespeare Theatre Of New Jersey, a company member with Drama Dept. in New York City, and he teaches at Yale School of Drama, The New School University, and The Neighborhood Playhouse.

Elizabeth M. Zernechel (Lighting Designer) designed lights for Cinderella last summer and for The Jungle Book in 2008. She has served Assistant Professor of Theatrical Design/Lighting at DeSales University for the past two years, and her designs this season included Guys & Dolls, Of Mice and Men, and Anne of Green Gables. She received her M.F.A. in theatrical lighting design at the University of Cincinnati: College Conservatory of Music, and her B.F.A. from Wright State University in Dayton, Ohio.

Robin Hood
Performance Dates: June 4th through Saturday, August 7th
Performance Times: 10am Wednesdays through Saturdays;
10am Tuesdays June 29, July 6, 20, 27 and August 3;
2pm matinees July 27 and 29, and August 3 and 5.
Ticket prices: $15 for adults and $11 for children (12 & under). Seating is general admission. Discounts are available for groups. To order, call 610-282-WILL or online at

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