An Exciting Summer at The Old Globe

The Old Globe in San Diego has created some outstanding previews of their 2011 Shakespeare Festival productions. See if they don’t get you excited about getting tickets today!

For tickets and more information about all of the shows that are part of The Old Globe’s 2011 Shakespeare Festival visit


Feast & Frolic with Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre on Nov. 12

Save the Date! 

It’s time to Feast and Frolic again with Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre’s Opening Night Performance of The Comedy of Errors on November 12, 2011 at The Broad Stage. 

What Elizabethan part will you play? A lady, a lord, a wench, a judge? A strongman, contortionist or 16th century cook? Will you dare to be a nimgimmer, an apothecarist, a sailor, a barrister, or an esquire? Will you show up as a dexter, a dipper, a dog-whipper, a elymaker, a glassblower, a bookbinder, an artist, an dowser, an armorer, an equerry, an ewe herd, a mason, a faker, or a good ol’ farmer? Something tells us you may have already thought of renting the very best period outfit to embody a fisherman, or was it a fortune-teller?

Save the date and start planning your part!

To learn more about The Broad Stage’s Feast & Frolic to benefit programming and arts education, go to

Independent Shakespeare Co. Takes on The Merry Wives

Photo Credit: Ashby de la Plaine

Only two more chances to see The Merry Wives of Windsor presented by Independent Shakespeare Co., this Saturday and Sunday July 30-31. We had a blast the night we went to the show. It was a perfect summer night and Griffith Park makes a lovely setting for an evening of outdoor theatre.  

We took our own picnic supper but you can also purchase food at the concession stand. Do bring a blanket and low-backed chairs for extra comfort as well as warm clothing. It can get chilly in the park when the sun goes down.

Here is what the critics are saying:

“Low Comedy doesn’t get much lower, or better. The evidence was in the howls of laughter careening across the park.” LA Weekly

“A corker of a revival.” LA Times

“Wonderfully drawn characters” Back Stage West

We heartily agree!

And if you’d rather see something more serious, David Melville is brilliant in Hamlet and you can catch him in one of the two performances this weekend Thursday and Friday, July 28 and 29. Click Here for more information about Independent Shakespeare Co.’s free Shakespeare in the Park and other programs.

A Noise Within Begins Annual Scholar’s Society

A Noise Within begins its annual “Scholar’s Society” program Wednesday, July 21. It includes a summer literature club and two workshops that explore the historical, political, philosophical, and cultural influences of classical masterpieces presented during the company’s upcoming season. 

This summer guest experts examine Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night, or What You Will, and Antony and Cleopatra, Eugene O’Neill’s Desire Under the Elms, Pierre Corneille’s The Illusion, and Molière’s The Bungler

The workshops offer an inside peek into the artistic process through interactive discussions with directors, designers, composers, and other artists that collaborate to create A Noise Within’s productions.

Most of the sessions take place at A Noise Within’s theatre at 234 South Brand Blvd, Glendale, with the possibility that the final sessions will be held in the company’s new state-of-the-art venue in Pasadena. The tax deductible “Scholar’s Society” membership, is $300 per person, or $550 per couple. If you are interested in joining the program contact Melissa Zakri, or call 818-265-7961.

As You Like It: The Musical

Paul D. Masterson, Rachele Gueli, and Jessica Pennington. Photo credit: Chad Restum

Love is in the air in The Classical Theatre Lab’s outdoor summer offering, As You Like It: The Musical, now playing in West Hollywood’s Plummer Park. Produced in the round with a few simple benches for set pieces and folding chairs for the audience, this cheerfully optimistic tale transports you to the Forest of Arden where two young lovers have sought refuge. Rosalind (Jessica Pennington) arrives after being banished by her uncle, Duke Frederick (Steve Peterson), and Orlando (handsome Paul D. Masterson) takes to the woods when he learns that his brother (Noah Gillett) has vowed to kill him.

Mistaken identities, professions of love gone awry and all manner of comical situations follow as they and a myriad of colorful characters cross paths in the woods. That Arden also contains a band of singing and dancing merry men wielding giant cheese wheels and baguettes only adds to the fun.

Director Tony Tanner brings his version of As You Like It in at about 90 minutes and serves it up in the outdoor courtyard of the Great Hall. That’s an easy length for the whole family to enjoy and with the sky overhead and a cool breeze in the air, you couldn’t pick a better way to pass a summer evening. July performances take place at 6:00 pm in Plummer Park and August shows in King’s Road Park are at 4:00 pm, except for August 7 which is at 11:30 am.

Pennington is deliciously feisty as Rosalind, biting into the Bard’s text with aplomb. She experiences love as a vexing and perplexing jumble of contradictions and her education of Orlando on the subject of how to woo a woman (while she is disguised as a boy) is a delight. So, too, is Matthew Henerson’s Touchstone, the witty fool who accompanies Rosalind and her cousin Celia (Rachele Gueli) into the forest. His likeable, wise guy observations make for plenty of laughs as he pokes and prods at the foolishness of those around him.

Tanner has also written some charming songs for his adaptation, like the a cappella opening number, “It Was A Lover and His Lass”, a comical brother duet in which Duke Frederick and Orlando sing of the perils of having a brother, and a Rosalind/Celia duet that has them pondering “How Would I Like To Fall In Love Today.” Orlando raps “Oh Rosalind” in the forest and also has a hysterical country song where he realizes he’s falling in love with “the boy,” and Rosalind shines in a number of bold songs that find Pennington in great voice.

At times some of the supporting characters lack the volume needed to be heard in the outdoor venue and underplay their performances, but that aside, this gentle introduction to one of Shakespeare’s easiest to understand romantic comedies is exactly what a summer night calls for. Enjoy!

As You Like It: the Musical is produced by Alex Wells and presented by the City of West Hollywood and The Classical Theatre Lab. Performances at the two venues are free but reservations are recommended. Click Here for more information or call 323-960-5691.

Reprinted from Musicals in LA
by Ellen Dostal

Welcome to Shakespeare in LA

“All the world’s a stage,
And all the men and women merely players:
They have their exits and their entrances;
And one man in his time plays many parts…”

As You Like It

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