Center Valley, PA – The major new programming PSF introduced last summer will serve as the model for the company’s 2012 season and feature:
- A fifth major production
- Two plays produced in repertory
- A Shakespeare play produced in the vein of Elizabethan rehearsal methods
- PSF’s 25th Shakespeare play out of 38 in the canon
“Three plays by Shakespeare, an American classic, a contemporary musical and two children’s shows will provide our audiences with programming that is adventurous, artistically diverse, and full of fascinating stories of rogues and lovers,” says Patrick Mulcahy, producing artistic director.
The 2012 season includes Shakespeare’s Much Ado About Nothing, The Tempest, and King John; Tennessee Williams’ legendary Cat on a Hot Tin Roof; and Stephen Sondheim’s Sweeney Todd. Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs and Shakespeare for Kids are the children’s show offerings. The season opens June 1 and runs through August 5 in the Labuda Center for the Performing Arts on the Center Valley campus of DeSales University.
Much Ado About Nothing and Cat on a Hot Tin Roof will be performed in repertory with the same cast on the Main Stage from July 11 – August 5. “This summer’s rep experience [of Hamlet and Pride and Prejudice] added a unique dimension to both productions by giving audiences an opportunity to see the same actors play very different roles in alternating performances – and perhaps gain a new appreciation for the actors’ artistry and skill,” says Mulcahy.
Similarly, our Elizabethan rehearsal mode production also created a new kind of chemistry for the acting company and the audience. In 2012, as with The Two Noble Kinsmen last summer, King John will be rehearsed as Shakespeare’s company likely would have. The actors will arrive with their lines learned, rehearse for a few days, wear what they can find – and open in less than a week. (Most productions at PSF rehearse for three-plus weeks.) The actors take charge. No director – the position didn’t exist in 1595 – and no designers.
“The actors totally embraced the process – as brief as it was — and the audience loved the sense of spontaneity and ownership that was quite unique to this process, to this production.” Mulcahy says. King John will run in the Schubert Theatre from July 25 – August 5.
The season will open on the Main Stage with Sondheim’s Sweeney Todd, featuring William Michals in the title role. Michals enchanted audiences as Emile DeBecque in South Pacific last summer, direct from his turn in the role on Broadway. PSF associate artistic director, Dennis Razze, will direct. The musical will run June 13 – July 1.
Set on a mysterious island inhabited by spirits of the air and monsters of the earth, Shakespeare’s tale of magic, love, revenge, and forgiveness will run in the Schubert Theatre June 20 – July 15. ” In The Tempest, one of my favorite Shakespeare plays, the exotic setting and characters become a backdrop that makes the distinctive qualities of humanity come through. What makes us human is made more poignant by the contrast with these other beings and energies,” Mulcahy says.
Theatre for families with younger children will include Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, June 1 – August 4, and Shakespeare for Kids, July 25 – August 4.
Subscription renewals begin in November; new subscriptions will be available after January 1st. Season and artists subject to change.