The Chesapeake Shakespeare Company has decided to shoot for the moon in its 2019-2020 season. In addition to doing Measure for Measure, Hamlet and Much Ado About Noting, the company will be producing The Complete Works of Shakespeare, albeit Abridged.
All this, and some classic Dracula and A Christmas Carol as well.
The Chesapeake Shakespeare season starts out with the story of our old buddy Vlad Tepas, a/k/a Dracula. The company has not yet revealed which version of the Transylvanian Traducer’s story it’s going to put on stage, but really, can any story in which the little death and the big death are so closely intertwined be bad? From October 4 to November 2, 2019.
Chesapeake Shakespeare’s annual and unique take on A Christmas Carol follows. Ian Gallner’s version places Dickens’ miser in Victorian Baltimore, and is rife with local references while taking Scrooge, Esq., through his classic experience of understanding and redemption. From December 6 to the 24th of this year.
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The 2020 portion of Chesapeake Shakespeare’s season is all Shakespeare, all the time. The company leads off with Measure for Measure, the story of what happens when a self-righteous prig assumes temporary power — and decrees that a young man be put to death for canoodling with his fiancée before wedding vows are pronounced. When the young man’s sister, a holy nun, comes to plead for his life, Mr. Temporary says he’ll spare it only if the sister is willing to part with one of her own vows in a dalliance with him. (Hint: it’s not the vow of poverty). February 7 to 23, 2020.
For those of you to whom one Shakespeare, or even three, is not enough, Chesapeake Shakespeare offers The Complete Works of Shakespeare, Abridged, Adam Long, Daniel Singer and Jess Winfield’s über-compression of the 37-play canon. The play clocks in at 97 minutes, which means that each one of the Bard’s works will average 2 minutes 43 seconds, more or less. That’s really hitting the high points! From March 6 to 29 of next year.
From epic buffoonery to epic tragedy: Chesapeake Shakespeare next presents Hamlet, arguably the greatest play in the English language. Young Hamlet is commanded by the shade of his father to avenge his death at the hands of Hamlet’s uncle, who is his father’s successor both to the throne and in the marriage bed. But is it real, or a hallucination? And can Hamlet outwit the wily King, who has resources of his own? (I’m writing this as though you had never seen or even heard of the play). From April 17 to May 10 of next year.
Chesapeake Shakespeare wraps up its season with its annual production at PFI Historic Park. The ruins of the Patapsco Female Institute will temporarily become Leonato’s estate as the most famous bickering couple in all of Shakespeare discover, almost against their will, that they love each other. In addition to the travails of Beatrice and Benedick, Much Ado About Nothing features all the good stuff: tempestuous love, treason, an army of buffoons, and real or feigned death.
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