Thursday, November 19, 2015

YOU’LL WANT TO SEE THE SHAKESPEARE THEATRE’S HOLIDAY PRODUCTION OF SHAKESPEARE’S EXUBERANT COMEDY “THE MERRY WIVES OF WINDSOR”

THE MERRY WIVES OF WINDSOR

WHEN: Wednesday, December 2nd and continue through Sunday, December 27th
WHERE: F.M. Kirby Shakespeare Theatre, 36 Madison Avenue (at Lancaster Road) in Madison.
TICKETS: Single tickets for The Merry Wives of Windsor start at $25 for preview performances and $32 for regular performances. Student Rush tickets are available a half-hour before curtain for $15 with a valid Student ID
Individual tickets and subscriptions can be purchased by calling the Box Office at 973-408-5600 or by visiting www.ShakespeareNJ.org.

Gather your kith and kin for The Shakespeare Theatre’s annual “holiday gift” for their audience.  Shakespeare’s rowdy, bawdy domestic comedy, featuring the roguish Sir John Falstaff, is a hilarious tale of marital hijinks (and low-jinks!), and will delight both young and old. The clever wives of Windsor put everyone to the test in this festive cornucopia of colorful characters, holiday spirit, and glittering merriment.

Directed by Artistic Director Bonnie J. Monte, this marks the final production of her 25th anniversary season.  Ms. Monte said, “I want this production of The Merry Wives of Windsor to be my thank-you gift to our wonderful audience.  I hope it feels like a delightful feast of theatrical sugar plums and comedic candy that culminates in a glittering final act of fantastical surprises, convivial holiday spirit and celebration.”

The Director: 2015 marks director Bonnie J. Monte’s landmark 25th season as Artistic Director of the Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey. Since 1990, Monte has directed more than 50 productions for the company, including critically acclaimed productions of The Guardsman, The Alchemist, The Tempest, Tovarich, As You Like It on the Outdoor Stage, Trelawny of the Wells, Man of La Mancha, Measure for Measure, A Christmas Carol, The Misanthrope, Othello, No Man’s Land, The Taming of the Shrew, Hamlet, and many others. Her adaptations of classic works, including Enrico IV, The Cherry Orchard and Pride and Prejudice have also earned her critical acclaim. Her adaptation of Carlo Goldoni’s The Servant of Two Masters is published by Playscripts, Inc. Most recently, Ms. Monte adapted the 2015 world premiere production of The Guardsman from the unabridged Hungarian translation by Gábor Lukin.

Special Performances:
Discount preview performances for The Merry Wives of Windsor take place on Wednesday, December 2nd at 7:30 PM, Thursday, December 3rd and Friday December 4th at 8:00 PM, and Saturday, December 5th at 2:00 PM. Preview performances offer opportunities for reduced-priced tickets while enjoying the excitement of the very first performances in front of an audience. As always, the first Preview performance is Pay What You Can Night. Visit The Shakespeare Theatre Box Office between noon and performance-time on Wednesday December 2nd to purchase a ticket for that evening’s 7:30 PM show, at a cost that is affordable to you. Offer subject to availability. Additionally, there will be a Family Matinee on Wednesday, December 23rd at 2:00 PM.

For no more than the cost of a regular ticket, three Symposium Series performances are offered for each show, and include a post-play discussion with the cast and artistic staff. Symposium performances for The Merry Wives of Windsor will be Tuesday, December 8th at 7:30 PM, Saturday, December 12th at 2:00 PM, and Saturday, December 19th at 2:00 PM.

For each production, The Shakespeare Theatre presents the popular education program Know the Show. From 7:00 to 7:30 PM, an artist from The Shakespeare Theatre will present a pre-performance talk that provides background information and an insider’s perspective on the production. The Know the Show performance will be held on Thursday, December 10th at 7:00 PM, and is free of charge.

The Cast:
David Andrew Macdonald is in his sixth season with The Shakespeare Theatre and plays the role of Falstaff. Company credits include A Christmas Carol, Pride and Prejudice, Julius Caesar, Arms and the Man, The Comedy of Errors, The Importance of Being Earnest, and Henry IV, Part I. Broadway credits include Skylight, Rocky, Mamma Mia!, Coram Boy, and Two Shakespearean Actors.

Matt Sullivan is in his eighth season with The Shakespeare Theatre and will play Master Ford.  Company credits include The Royal Family, Henry VIII, The Devil’s Disciple, Tovarich, The Playboy of the Western World, Trelawny of the Wells, The Comedy of Errors, I Capture the Castle, Othello, The Misanthrope, Noises Off, Twelfth Night, and King Lear. He attended The Juilliard School.

Caralyn Kozlowski returns for her eleventh season with The Shakespeare Theatre to play Mistress Alice Ford. Company credits include Misalliance, As You Like It, Trelawny of the Wells, The Servant of Two Masters, Three Sisters, Othello, The Play’s The Thing, and Private Lives.

Saluda Camp returns to The Shakespeare Theatre in her fourth season, playing Mistress Margaret Page. Company credits include The Guardsman, Pride and Prejudice, as well as tours with Shakespeare LIVE! and the Next Stage Ensemble. Regional credits include four seasons with Connecticut Free Shakespeare, as well as five seasons with the National Theatre of the Performing Arts. Saluda trained in London at Mountview Academy of Theatre Arts.

In his thirteenth season with The Shakespeare Theatre, Ames Adamson returns to the Main Stage as Sir Hugh Evans. Company credits include Misalliance, A Most Dangerous Woman, Oliver Twist, A Christmas Carol, Timon of Athens, Hamlet, King Lear, Henry V, and numerous productions with Shakespeare LIVE!  Recently, Mr. Adamson appeared in Arms and the Man, as well as Martin Crimp’s adaptation of The Misanthrope at Quintessence Theatre Group in Philadelphia.

Jon Barker takes the stage in his eighth season at The Shakespeare Theatre in the role of Doctor Caius. Company credits include The Guardsman, The Alchemist, The Tempest, Pericles, Tovarich, Trelawny of the Wells, Henry IV: Part One, Othello, The Misanthrope, The Taming of the Shrew, A Streetcar Named Desire, and Amadeus among others on the Main Stage, and multiple tours with Shakespeare LIVE!. Mr. Barker also appeared in both Romeo and Juliet and The Tempest in the New Jersey Symphony Orchestra/Shakespeare Theatre collaborations. Regional credits include work at Hamilton Stage, Luna Stage, The Red Room, 12 Miles West, and The Kennedy Center.

Kristie Dale Sanders plays Mistress Quickly. At The Shakespeare Theatre, Sanders has appeared in Pericles, Accidental Death of an Anarchist, The School for Wives, King Lear, Measure for Measure, and The Rivals, among others. Her Broadway credits include Evita, Next Fall, The Phantom of the Opera, Urinetown, and The Sound of Music.

Joey Collins plays George Page in his first season with The Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey. Broadway credits include The Glass Menagerie, Rock n’ Roll and The Lonesome West. He has performed Off-Broadway in Straight Faced Lies, St. Joan of the Stockyards, Vieux Carré, Bug, Beasley’s Christmas Party, Gross Indecency: The Three Trials of Oscar Wilde, Apartment 3A, and The Antigone Project.

Longtime company member Raphael Nash Thompson will play the Host of the Garter Inn. Thompson was last seen at the Shakespeare Theatre in last season’s Much Ado About Nothing. Thompson’s credits include Morocco in The Merchant of Venice at Theater for a New Audience with F. Murray Abraham as Shylock, as well as work with Shakespeare Theatre Company, Shakespeare Festival of St. Louis, Red Bull Theatre, among many others.

David Cryer plays Robert Shallow. This is his second season with The Shakespeare Theatre. He was last seen in the reading of A Tender Thing. Select Broadway credits include Phantom of the Opera, Lend Me A Tenor, Evita, 1776, Come Summer, The Desert Song, Fade Out, Fade In, and The Devil’s Disciple. Off Broadway credits include Tamara, Mademoiselle Colombe, The Streets of New York, and The Fantasticks. 

Jonathan Finnegan is in his first season with The Shakespeare Theatre and plays Abraham Slender. He was most recently in Dracula with Three Day Hangover in NYC. He has performed with Titan Theatre Company and other NYC theater companies as well as regionally at the St. Louis Repertory Theatre, Actors Theatre of Louisville, and the Great River Shakespeare Festival. He was a member of the 2011-12 acting apprentice company at Actors Theatre of Louisville.

The Artistic Staff: The world of The Merry Wives of Windsor comes to life with the help of scenic designer Jonathan Wentz, costume designer Yao Chen, lighting designer Tony Galaska, and sound designer Bonnie J. Monte. Kathy Snyder serves as production stage manager.

One of the leading Shakespeare theatres in the nation, serving 100,000 adults and children annually, The Shakespeare Theatre is New Jersey’s largest professional theatre company dedicated solely to Shakespeare’s canon and other world classics. Through its distinguished productions and education programs, the company strives to illuminate the universal and lasting relevance of the classics for contemporary audiences.

The acclaimed Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey is an independent, professional theatre company located on the Drew University campus. The Outdoor Stage is located on the campus of the College of St. Elizabeth and the Theatre’s support and education facility is in Florham Park.

The Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey’s programs are made possible, in part, by funding from the New Jersey State Council on the Arts/Department of State, a Partner Agency of the National Endowment for the Arts, as well as funds from the National Endowment for the Arts.  Additional major support is received from The Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation, F.M. Kirby Foundation, The Edward T. Cone Foundation, The Shubert Foundation, CTW Foundation, The Samuel H. Scripps Foundation, and Drew University, as well as contributions from numerous corporations, foundations, government agencies and individuals. The 2015 Outdoor Stage production of Love’s Labour’s Lost is sponsored by Bank of America.