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Seattle Rep's Public Works Shares A New Take On Shakespeare's THE WINTER'S TALE

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In-person and virtual ticket reservations are free to the public beginning November 15, 2021.

Seattle Rep announces the return of Seattle Rep's Public Works, the groundbreaking community engagement and participatory theater initiative creating theater of, by, and for the people of the Northwest region. What has been in motion all year in the form of free community workshops and classes will culminate in a truly special hybrid film and live theatrical experience of Shakespeare's The Winter's Tale for the public to enjoy December 16-19, 2021. In-person and virtual ticket reservations are free to the public beginning November 15, 2021 at SeattleRep.org.

Seattle Rep's Public Works has become known for partnering with nonprofits throughout the city - including Boys & Girls Club of King County, Sound Generations/ Ballard Northwest Senior Center, Path with Art, and more - to engage dozens of community members from various walks of life to join in the creation of ambitious works of participatory theater. In the past, Seattle Rep's Public Works' annual program cycle would culminate with a theatrical production on Seattle Rep's Bagley Wright stage, featuring dozens of community members alongside professional actors and creative team members in a grand and professional theater production. This year, due to COVID-19 and in an abundance of caution, the program took on a new form.

In June, Seattle Rep's Public Works cast 52 community members and five local union or Actors' Equity Association actors in a hybrid film and theatrical production of a musical adaptation of Shakespeare's The Winter's Tale, a tragic comedy of romance, revenge, and reconciliation. Producing the play in the film medium allowed the team to minimize large group gatherings and thus have greater control over the safety of all participants, as well as create a new kind of theatrical exploration for program participants. Thankfully, there was not one COVID case reported during the eight-week process of creating this joyful film.

"In our desire to make theater with community and our commitment to find a safe way to do so, making a film in and around our building and Seattle Center felt like a great way to honor the storytelling core of the work we do together," Public Works Director, Inji Kamel said. "You'll notice the scenes are shot in locations you find familiar. You'll notice the architecture of Seattle Center in some of our outdoor scenes and see parts of the theater you've never seen before as the cast performs in the catwalks and backstage elevators as well as the Bagley Wright stage."

The film was shot by Derek Edamura, Public Works Documentarian, and directed by Desdemona Chiang (Seattle Rep: Constellations), with choreography by Trina Mills, music direction by R.J. Tancioco, production design by Darcey Zoller, costumes by Danielle Nieves, lighting by Robert J. Aguilar, and sound design by Kevin Heard.

"Through the film medium, audiences get to see the actors up close in a way we can't offer on stage. You see the action and the nuance of each performance, feeling what the adaptors and our artistic team intended. The design is as beautiful as it always is in a Public Works or Seattle Rep show. For those who attend the live screening at Cornish Playhouse, we'll further provide the theatrical ambiance you might experience in a traditional theatrical setting through lighting and atmospherics, and there are even a few opportunities for the audience to collectively add to that ambiance. Most importantly, you'll be side by side with the same enthusiastic folks who enjoy seeing the beautiful performances our neighbors provide," Kamel added.

The Winter's Tale in-person screening experience will take place at Cornish Playhouse, next door to Seattle Rep while the theater undergoes scheduled remodeling and maintenance. A virtual, screen-from-home option will also be available. Tickets are free, though both in-person and virtual space is limited.


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