This summer, Independent Shakespeare Co. brings a bit of “La Dolce Vita” to The Griffith Park Free Shakespeare Festival as it presents its take on one of Shakespeare’s most loved comedies, The Taming of the Shrew. Set on the coast of Italy in a provincial, 1950’s town, it is directed by Independent Shakespeare Co.’s managing director David Melville. The show will begin previews on Thursday, July 24 and will open on Saturday, August 2 and perform through Friday, August 29 at Old Zoo in Griffith Park. All ISC Summer Shakespeare productions begin at 7:00 pm and are FREE to the public.
Melville says, “We’ve tackled all of the big comedies at the festival except The Taming of the Shrew. It’s a big crowd pleaser but it comes with some complicated sexual politics! We’re thrilled to bring this play to our audience because Melissa Chalsma and Luis Galindo were such a hit last year in Macbeth. Probably one of the best things we’ve done as a company. It’s going to be so exciting to see what they do with Kate and Petruchio. We’re looking to Federico Fellini for this production. Fellini is a very theatrical director and from a design point of view it’s a great source to draw from – for The Taming of the Shrew we want to create a small community like the one portrayed in Amarcord with La Dolce Vita sexiness thrown in.”
Baptista has a problem. His biggest job is to see his daughters married well. His youngest, Bianca, is a piece of cake: she’s obedient, dutiful, and modest. However his eldest, Kate, just doesn’t know her place. She’s headstrong, opinionated, and prone to speaking her own mind. What’s a father to do? His salvation appears in the form of Petruchio, a traveler with an eye on Kate’s plentiful dowry. He uses every dirty trick in the book to tame her, but he just might find in the end that you can’t keep a good woman down.
In addition to Chalsma and Galindo, the cast will feature Ryan Vincent Anderson, Richard Azurdia, Joseph Culliton, Thomas Ehas, André Martin, Xavi Moreno, Ashley Nguyen, Sean Pritchett, Erika Soto, Erwin Tuazon and Xavier J. Watson. Season production design is by Caitlin Lainoff. Season lighting design is by Bosco Flanagan. Composer is David Melville. For more information, please call (818) 710-6306 or visit www.iscla.org.