THE COMEDY OF ERRORS is Now on Stage at The Stratford Festival
The Comedy of Errors gets a modern treatment by director Keira Loughran, who introduces gender fluidity to Shakespeare's hilarious comedy. Previews are now underway at the Studio Theatre.
"The world of Ephesus in this production is an homage to the history, insights and accomplishments of transgender and gender-fluid communities," says Ms Loughran. "Their stories have inspired me to explore what it might take to establish, in the face of persecution, a community that is fiercely committed to inclusion, self-determination and non-conformity. This opened up other ways for us to consider the idea of 'double,' to interpret violence, to discover comedy, to understand family."
Separated in infancy, two pairs of twins - played by Beryl Bain and Josue Laboucane, and Jessica B. Hill and Qasim Khan, respectively - are now in the same city, each unaware of the presence of their long-lost counterparts. The result is a hectic series of mix-ups and misunderstandings, as the look-alikes are repeatedly mistaken for each other, until an unexpected reunion brings the long-sundered families together at last.
"When I was putting together this season around the theme of 'free will,' I chose The Comedy of Errors for its message about finding yourself," says Artistic Director Antoni Cimolino. "It's a hilarious comedy filled with slapstick fun, but also with a profound yearning for completion. The fresh and imaginative approach Keira has taken with this production speaks beautifully to concepts of freedom today."
The creative team includes Designer Joanna Yu, Lighting Designer Kaileigh Krysztofiak, Composer and Sound Designer Alexander MacSween and Fight Director John Stead.
The Comedy of Errors, performed in one act, opens on June 1. To meet demand for tickets, three performances have already been added to the schedule. The production now runs until October 20.
Support for the 2018 season of the Studio Theatre is generously provided by Sandra & Jim Pitblado.
The Comedy of Errors at the Forum
The Forum is a series of events, such as exclusive showcases, guest speakers, special meals, music and family fun, that offer theatregoers a unique opportunity to delve deeper into the ideas and issues raised by the 2018 playbill.
Saturday, July 7
10:30 a.m. to noon
Wednesday, September 12
10:45 a.m. to noon
Reflecting on their own experiences of growing up with a twin, company members Oksana Sirju and Gordon Patrick White join Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre youth psychiatrist John Teshima to discuss the nature of the connection between twins and the bonds among family.
Sunday, September 30
10:30 a.m. to noon
Toronto Star critic and Brock University professor Karen Fricker joins company members Seana McKenna, Beryl Bain, Michelle Giroux and Jessica B. Hill to discuss the opportunities, discoveries and challenges they've experienced inhabiting Shakespearean roles traditionally played by their male colleagues.
The Stratford Festival's 2018 season runs until November 4, featuring The Tempest, The Comedy of Errors, Coriolanus, Julius Caesar, The Music Man, The Rocky Horror Show, Long Day's Journey Into Night, An Ideal Husband, To Kill a Mockingbird, Napoli Milionaria!, Brontë: The World Without and Paradise Lost. For tickets and more information, visit stratfordfestival.ca or call 1.800.567.1600.
Photo by Clay Stang