Release Date: July 15, 2009
Shakespeare Takes a Turn for the Funny at ASU
“The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (Abridged)” is aptly titled as Shakespeare’s 37 plays are condensed into about 1 ½ hours for the Arts at ASU’s second Summer Dinner Theatre beginning July 30 in the Angelo State University Modular Theatre.
Show times will be 8 p.m. July 30-Aug. 1 and Aug. 6-8 with dinner served each night at 7 p.m. A matinee performance is scheduled for 2 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 2, with dinner served at 1 p.m. Doors open at 6:45 p.m. for the evening shows and 12:45 p.m. for the Sunday matinee. The Modular Theatre is located in ASU’s Carr Education-Fine Arts Building, 2602 Dena Drive.
Adam Long, Daniel Singer and Jess Winfield’s comedic take on the classic literature sends the actors careening through all 37 of the 400-year-old works and converts them for modern audiences. The irreverent script is filled with pratfalls, puns, the willful misreading of names and dialogue, clunky female impersonations, clean-cut ribaldry and broad burlesque.
Audiences will see histories turned into a hilarious football game and Othello gets a hip-hop take with rap dialogue. The show’s atmosphere has been likened to Monty Python, Mel Brooks and “The Bullwinkle Show.”
“What we’ve got here are three young men (probably actors) trying to make a buck,” said James Worley, associate professor of drama and director of the production. “While they sheepishly admit that the audience may know more about their subject matter than they do, they dive into the Bard of Avon’s work with an energy and love that’s truly astonishing to see.”
Worley said the production is presented at the speed of a minute waltz and induces side-splitting laughter.
“Within the first few days of rehearsal,” he said, “the cast had me in stitches with their antics. We’ve got a Julia Child-inspired cooking show, a compilation of comedy and a sports-themed presentation of the best of Shakespeare’s tragedies.”
Featured performers in the production are Casey Baccus, Arturo Garcia, Mason Cargile and Jennifer Crump.
Baccus performed previously on the ASU stage as Howard Bevans in “Picnic” and has also appeared in “The Boys Next Door” and as Charlie Brown in “You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown.” Garcia is fresh off the ASU production of California Suite, where he played Marvin Michaels.
Cargile’s last ASU performance came as Rick Steadman in “The Nerd.” His part in the Shakespeare production will be his eighth main stage show and he has also participated in three studio productions. Crump, from Seguin, specializes in technical work and has participated in previous ASU productions “XSR: Die!,” “A Lie of the Mind,” “The Boys Next Door,” “Godspell” and “California Suite.”
Eldra Sanford serves as costumer, Matt Smith is the technical director, Taylor Macklin is the stage manager, Samantha Sandifer is the costume designer and wardrobe manager and Sarah Stewart is assistant stage manager.
Tickets go on sale Monday, July 20, at $12.50 for ASU students and ASU activity card holders, $15 for non-ASU students and Arts at ASU subscribers, and $20 for the general public. The ASU box office is open weekdays from 2-6 p.m. in the Carr EFA Building. For reservations, call 942-2000.
For more information on the production and cast, contact Worley at 942-2146, ext. 241.