A national touring company's imaginative interpretation of a timeless Shakespeare comedy will bring an enchanted forest and theatrical magic to East Central University on Nov. 2 [TUESDAY].
New York's Aquila Theatre will perform "A Midsummer Night's Dream" at 7:30 p.m. in the Ataloa Theatre in the Hallie Brown Ford Fine Arts Center.
The company is known for presenting fresh and inventive productions and for its comedic mastery and physical ensemble techniques.
Actors Sarah Amankwah, Matthew Clancy, Howard Crossley, Andrew French, Jessica Tomchak, Alinka Wright and Owen Young have extensive experience in classical and contemporary productions in British theatre, movies, television and even a BBC Asian Network radio soap opera. Crossley portrayed Pumbaa in "The Lion King" in London for six years and appeared in the film version of "A Midsummer Night's Dream."
Aquila Theatre actors Jessica Tomchak and Andrew French perform a scene from Shakespeare's "A Midsummer Night's Dream." The national touring company, known for its fresh and inventive productions, will present the well-known comedy at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday [NOV. 2] in the Ataloa Theatre in East Central University's Hallie Brown Ford Fine Arts Center. Tickets are $18 for adults and $15 for students and ECU faculty and staff. They may be purchased by credit card at the ECU Bursar's Office or by calling 580-559-5216 or at the ticket booth the night of the performance.
Some have performed previously with Aquila Theatre, as well as with the Royal Shakespeare Company, Royal National Theatre, Old Vic Theatre and other well-known theatres, and on London's West End, Broadway and off-Broadway.
Their backgrounds include training at the Manchester School of Theatre, Drama Centre London, the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama and the Shakespeare Institute.
The actors will present a master class for ECU and high school theatre students Tuesday morning and will host a limited-seating pre-performance discussion at 6:30 p.m. in the Chalmers Herman Theatre in the fine arts center.
Reservations are recommended for the production. Tickets are $18 for adults and $15 for students and ECU faculty and staff. They may be purchased by credit card at the ECU Bursar's Office or by calling 580-559-5216 or at the ticket booth the night of the performance.
Artistic director Peter Meineck founded Aquila Theatre in 1991 with the desire to create bold reinterpretations of classical plays for contemporary audiences. The productions seek to free the spirit of the original work and recreate the excitement of the live performance that made it become a classic play. The theatre's mission is to bring the greatest works of classical drama to audiences in their own communities, presented with the highest quality at an affordable price.
"A Midsummer Night's Dream" deals with the universal theme of love and its attendant complications: passion, lust, frustration, depression, confusion and, of course, marriage. In addition to the enchanted forest, the story deals with the injustice of the Athenian court and the political strife of the fairy kingdom.
The plot focuses on the trials and experiences of two sets of lovers, the Fairy King and Queen and their servants, and a group of rude mechanicals attempting to stage a production of "Pyramus and Thisbe" for the wedding of the Duke of Athens.
At the heart of the story is the Fairy King's servant, the impish Puck, whose magic creates an endless supply of mirth, mistaken identity and inappropriate, if not absolutely ludicrous passions.
For more information, contact Dallas Coplin at 580-559-5781 or visit www.ecok.edu/hbffac. The performance is sponsored in part by the Oklahoma Arts Council.
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