As reported by Playbill On-Line back in April, the Oregon Shakespeare Festival 1998 season will boast five Shakespeare plays, plus a rare Lorraine Hansberry drama and a Eugene O'Neill drama directed by Jose Quintero.
A repertory of more than 60 performers comprise the casts for the shows. Perhaps the best-known among them is Anthony Heald, who starred Off Broadway in Pygmalion and in filmdom's Silence Of The Lambs.
Here's the update line-up:
ANGUS BOWMER THEATRE:
A Midsummer Night's Dream by William Shakespeare (Feb. 20-Nov. 1, 1998); directed by associate artistic director Penny Metropulos. A light forest farce of mistaken identities and misplaced affections.
Starring are Jonathan Adams, Tim Barker, Melany Bell, Aldo Billingslea, Susan Champion, Sarah Connolly, Paul Erwin, B.W. Gonzalez, Andrewa Kate Harris, Tony James, David Kelly, Bridgette Y. Loriaux, Mark Murphey, James Oliver, Maceo Oliver, Ray Porter (Puck), Robynn Rodriquez, Mhari Sandoval, Triney Sandoval, John Stadelman, G. Valmont Thomas, Tyrone Wilson.
The School For Scandal by Richard Brinsley Sheridan (Feb. 22-Oct. 31, 1998. Join the society of Lady Teazle and Lady Sneerwell, where character assassination reigns supreme.
Ken Albers (Sir Toby) will open the run as Sir Toby, to be followed (after April 7, 1998) by Ned Schmidtke. Also starring are Clayton Corzatte (Sir Peter Teazle), Catherine Lynn Davis (Lady Teazle), Eileen DeSandre, Michael Elich (Surface), Dan Donohue, Bridgette Y. Loriaux, Sandy McCallum, Robin Goodrin Nordli, James Oliver, Maceo Oliver, Demetra Pittman, John Pribyl, Dennis Robertson, Douglas Rowe, Triney Sandoval, Les Blancs , a political epic by Lorraine Hansberry (A Raisin in the Sun) (Feb. 21-July 12, 1998). Hansberry's unfinished last play is directed by associate artistic director Tim Bond.
Starring are Melany Bell, Aldo Billingslea, Leith M. Burke, Daniel Armand Coles, Tim Fullerton, Bill Geisslinger, Kirsten Giroux, Andrea Kate Harris, Richard Howard, Kevin Kenerly, Charlie Kimball, Dee Maaske, J.P. Phillips, Ned Schmidtke, Derrick Lee Weeden, Rafeeq Wilson, Tyrone Wilson.
Uncle Vanya , by Anton Chekhov. Directed by Libby Appel (April 22-Oct. 31, 1998). A sad/funny look at misplaced affections and the end of a way of life for a Russian family.
Starring are Catherine E. Coulson (Marina), Eileen DeSandre, Richard Elmore, Paul Erwin, Robert Vincent Frank, Anthony Heald (Astrov), Robin Goodrin Nordli, Robynn Rodriguez (Sonya), Douglas Rowe.
A Touch Of The Poet , by Eugene O'Neill (July 29-Nov. 1, 1998). Directed by O'Neill veteran Jose' Quintero (for the first time since its premiere in 1957), with set designs by Ming Cho Lee.
In the cast are Ken Albers (Cornelius), Richard Elmore, Bill Geisslinger, Kirsten Giroux, Michael J. Hume, Dee Maaske, Sandy McCallum, Dennis Robertson, Jodi Somers,
BLACK SWAN THEATRE
Vilna's Got A Golem , by Ernest Joselovitz, directed by Barbara Damashek (Feb. 26-June 27, 1998). This play received an Off Broadway staging at the American Jewish Theatre earlier this year.
Starring are Linda Alper, Charlie Bachmann, Catherine E. Coulson, Tony DeBruno, Robert Vincent Frank, Michael J. Hume, James J. Peck and U. Jonathan Toppo.
Sailing To Byzantium , by Sandra Deer (April 2-Nov. 1, 1998). This work was presented as a play reading at OSF in 1996.
Linda Alper, Dan Donohue (Ezra Pound), James Edmondson, Mark Murphey (Yeats), Demetra Pittman, Mhari Sandovaland Christine Williams star.
Measure For Measure by William Shakespeare, directed by Libby Appel (July 8-Nov. 1, 1998). A woman pleading for her brother's life comes up against Venetian corruption and hypocrisy.
Starring in the show are Anthony Heald (Lucio), Richard Howard, Suzanne Irving, Kevin Kenerly, Vilma Silva, Terrilynn Towns and Derrick Lee Weeden.
OSF's outdoor, Elizabethan Theatre, which opens in June, will host three Shakespeare works: Cymbeline (directed by associate artist James Edmondson) (June 10-Oct. 9, 1998); Henry IV, Part One (directed by Michael Edwards) (June 9-Oct. 11, 1998); and The Comedy Of Errors (directed by Ken Albers) (June 11 Oct. 10, 1998). Cast-members for the Shakespeare plays will be drawn from the above-mentioned OSF ensemble.
For tickets and information on the Oregon Shakespeare Festival season, call (541) 482-6811. The theatre is located on Pioneer Street in Ashland.
-- By David Lefkowitz