Go-Go's Musical Head Over Heels to Premiere as Part of Oregon Shakespeare Festival's 2015 Season

By Adam Hetrick
17 Mar 2014

Jeff Whitty
Jeff Whitty

The world-premiere musical Head Over Heels, featuring a book by Tony Award winner Jeff Whitty and the music of the Go-Go's, will be staged as part of the Oregon Shakespeare Festival's 2015 season, which will also include the world premiere of Lynn Nottage's Sweat and the Frank Loesser classic Guys and Dolls helmed by Tony winner Mary Zimmerman.

Celebrating its 80th anniversary year, OSF also announced plans to produce all 37 plays in the Shakespeare canon over the next ten years.

"Although OSF has completed the canon three times since our founding in 1935, it has taken 19 years or more each time. I am thrilled to allow ongoing and new generations of OSF audience members the opportunity to see Shakespeare’s entire body of work—in robust American interpretations by some of our nation’s most exciting artists, including the largest and most gifted acting company in the country—within the relatively short span of a decade," artistic director Bill Rauch (All The Way) said in a statement.

The 2015 season opens with Shakespeare's Much Ado About Nothing (Feb. 20-Nov. 1) with Guys and Dolls, directed by Zimmerman (The Jungle Book, Metamorphoses), to follow (Feb. 22-Nov. 1). Rauch will helm Alexa Junge's world-premiere stage adaptation of the Sarah Waters crime novel Fingersmith (Feb. 21-July 12).



Also planned is the U.S. premiere of Stan Lai's Secret Love in Peach Blossom Land, which, according to OSF, "tells the tale of two drama troupes who happen to reserve the same rehearsal space at the same time. One group is rehearsing a 20th-century romantic tragedy, Secret Love, while the other company is rehearsing a period comedy, Peach Blossom Land." Performances are scheduled for April 15-Oct. 31.

Nottage's world-premiere work Sweat will follow, running July 29-Oct. 31. Here's how it's billed: "A group of close friends share everything: drinks, secrets, love and laughter. But their world is upended by a shake-up at the steel plant where they work and an unspeakable act that has repercussions over two generations."

Additional productions include Shakespeare's Pericles, directed by Joseph Haj (Feb. 26-Nov. 1); Eugene O'Neill's Long Day's Journey Into Night, directed by Christopher Liam Moore (March 25-Oct. 31); Shakespeare's Antony and Cleopatra, directed by Rauch (June 2-Oct. 9); and The Count of Monte Cristo (June 4-Oct. 11).

OSF will also produce the world premiere of Head Over Heels, staged by Ed Sylvanus Iskandar (June 3-Oct. 10). It features a book by Whitty (Avenue Q, Bring It On, Tales of the City) and music and lyrics by the all-female rock group The Go-Go's ("We Got the Beat" "Our Lips Are Sealed"). The Elizabethan period-set comedy is based on Philip Sidney's "Arcadia."

Visit osfashland.org for further information.