Tickets to the 13 productions in the 2000 season of the Stratford Festival, the prestigious Ontario fest known for Shakespeare, classics and new works, go on sale 9 AM (ET) Jan. 15. Call (800) 567-1600.
Elite contributors who are festival members got first crack at tickets Nov. 29, 1999.
The 2000 spring-to-fall season of the Stratford Festival, in southwestern Ontario, about two hours from Toronto, will include the world premiere of Elizabeth Rex, a play by Timothy Findlay and Paul Thompson about the unsuccessful revolt against Queen Elizabeth I in 1601. Tony Award winner Brent Carver is featured.
The 13 productions, including a concert staging of Gilbert & Sullivan's Patience, spotlight writers from Ancient Greece (Euripides) to contemporary Canada and the U.S. (Findlay and Donald Margulies, respectively). Elizabeth Rex (slated for the tiny Tom Patterson Theatre) joins growing list of Stratford commissions, including past entries In the Ring, Alice Through the Looking Glass and the new translation of Filumena.
Fiddler on the Roof, the 1964 Sholom Aleichem-based musical by Joseph Stein, Jerry Bock and Sheldon Harnick, will have its first production by the prestigious festival, on the flagship Festival stage. Carver will play Tevye.
Not surprisingly, musicals have become major cash cows for the Shakespeare-rooted nonprofit fest. (West Side Story was a major draw in the 1999 season.)
Also on the Festival stage are Hamlet, Moliere's Tartuffe with Brian Bedford and The Three Musketeers. Paul Gross, of TV's "Due South" will play the melancholy Dane in Hamlet.
On the proscenium Avon Theatre stage will be As You Like It, the four-act version of Oscar Wilde's The Importance of Being Earnest (said to be the North American debut of this version) and the recent Broadway adaptation script of The Diary of Anne Frank by Frances Goodrich and Albert Hackett, newly revised by Wendy Kesselman. The G&S Patience is also at the Avon.
The intimate, three-quarter space, the Tom Patterson, will house Shakespeare's bloody Titus Andronicus (in vogue lately, with a current film version by director Julie Taymor), Euripides' Medea ("freely adapted by Robinson Jeffers") and, as previously announced, acting legend Uta Hagen reprising her New York role in Donald Margulies' Collected Stories. Maxim Mazumdar's Oscar Remembered, with Michael Therriault as Lord Alfred Douglas, also plays the Patterson, under the direction of William Hutt.
-- By Kenneth Jones