Plays Included in the UW Oregon Shakespeare Tour
by William Shakespeare
In Denmark, a king is dead. His brother, Claudius, has snatched the throne and the widowed queen. Life goes on—for everyone but Hamlet. The prince, fixated on his uncle as the murderer, is charged by his father's ghost to avenge the wrong. Disconnected from the foul world around him, Hamlet strains under the weight of his task. OSF's first production in a decade of Shakespeare's disturbing and psychologically rich masterpiece digs into the enigma of a man's mind.
Henry IV Part One
by William Shakespeare
Prince Hal will be king some day, but right now he's hanging with a crowd of lowlifes, led by the round-bellied and irresistibly magnetic John Falstaff. Hal's having the time of his life, but King Henry wishes his son were more like the valiant Hotspur, head of the rebellious Percy family gunning for the throne. For Henry and his line, it's a life-or-death military struggle for England's political future. Will Hal rally to the cause and marshal leadership qualities worthy of a crown?
The Merchant of Venice
by William Shakespeare
Comedies end in weddings, and, true, The Merchant of Venice closes with three happy couples. But is Shakespeare's play a comedy? Shylock, a moneylender from Venice's Jewish ghetto, makes a loan, interest-free, to an upper-class Christian merchant. When the deal goes bad, years of discrimination surface as Shylock makes a harsh demand for repayment. If this is comedy, it is a fearless, ironic one in which, amidst comic moments, the quality of mercy is cross-examined and complex issues of difference are unmasked.
Optional Plays Available
by Lynn Nottage
Mama Nadi is a fierce survivor amidst a brutal civil war. Inside her thatched-roof forest haven, she offers soldiers a drink, a dance, a girl—a place to forget. For a handful of dislocated, damaged women, Mama Nadi provides protection. Her girls sell their bodies, but it is better than what lies outside her doors. Stirring up New York with its off-Broadway run, Nottage's 2009 Pulitzer Prize- and Obie-winning tribute to the resilience of women is an uplifting testimony to the tenacity of hope. (Mature themes, strong language; Ruined addresses the issue of sexual violence and its emotional impact on victims and their loved ones.)
She Loves Me Boy meets girl. Strike that. Boy writes to girl; girl writes to boy. By night, they are passionate pen pals brought together by a lonely hearts ad. By day, the unsuspecting "lovers" are quarrelling clerks at a European parfumerie, surrounded by a cast of coworkers with longings of their own. Based on the play that also inspired the film You've Got Mail, and with music by the songwriting team who created Fiddler on the Roof, this effervescent romance will sing its way into your heart.
Twelfth Night By William Shakespeare Both Orsino and Olivia's households have love on the brain. But who, really, are the objects of desire? When Viola, a shipwrecked castaway, disguises herself as a boy and finds work as Orsino's servant, she becomes entangled in an awkward love triangle. Things come unglued, but for almost everyone, Shakespeare's treasured comedy ends happily. Our 75th anniversary production of the play that launched OSF in 1935 brims with antics, beds and bathtubs, and beloved characters, both prudish and crudish.
American Night By Richard Montoya and Culture Clash As Juan José studies for his citizenship exam, his obsession to pass takes him on a fantastical odyssey. On a zig-zag journey through U.S. history, Juan discovers America's best in a handful of unsung citizens who made courageous choices in some of the country's toughest times. L.A.'s legendary Culture Clash partners with company actors in a cutting, comic mix of past and present, stereotype and truth that will move you into a deeper vision of our shared story. American Night premieres OSF's highly anticipated U.S. history cycle, American Revolutions.
Throne of Blood Adapted by Ping Chong In 1957, legendary film director Akira Kurosawa created a landmark version of Macbeth. Set in the remote, ritualized world of feudal Japan—where haunted woods and mysterious spirits work their macabre magic on the warrior Washizu and his ambitious lady—it is Shakespeare's story as you have never seen it before. Theatrical and cinematic artistry merge in this first-ever stage adaptation of Kurosawa's masterpiece, which moves to the lauded Brooklyn Academy of Music's Next Wave Festival after its run in Ashland.