From the 2013-2014 Season:
Twelfth Night and Troilus and Cressida (in repertory)
Playing September 06, 2013 to September 29, 2013
Twelfth Night $15 General Admission Preview Wednesday August 28
Troilus and Cressida $15 General Admission Preview Thursday September 5
Troilus and Cressida $15 General Admission Preview Thursday September 5
Runs In Repertory Sept 13, 15, 19, 21, 27, 29, 2013
Directed by Drew Reeves
A shipwreck, separated identical twins, mistaken identities, romance and one pair of yellow stockings…welcome to Orsino’s court and the zany world of Twelfth Night.Join the cast and crew members for a lively Question and Answer session on Sunday September 15 after the show!
Troilus and Cressida
Runs In Repertory September 8, 12, 14, 20, 22, 26, 28, 2013
Directed by Drew Reeves
Shakespeare tackles Homer, Virgil, and Chaucer in a battle for the ages. In Troilus and Cressida Shakespeare puts his own wickedly absurdist spin on the classic tale of Helen of Troy and the "epic" battles fought over her. The Trojan Prince Troilus and his secret love Cressida are separated by the opposing forces without regard to their relationship. Full of tragicomedy and satire, come see how Shakespeare turns one of literature's oldest stories on its head.
A part of The Shakespeare Evolution Series!
Read the Plot Synopsis
Twelfth Night Synopsis
Viola “of Messaline”, wrecked on the Illyrian shore and believing wrongly that her twin brother Sebastian has been drowned becomes (in the male disguise of Cesario) a page to Orsino, the Duke. She bears his reiterated and scorned love message to the young countess Olivia, who is mourning affectedly for a dead brother. Olivia falls in love with Viola/Cesario. Meanwhile (Act II) Olivia’s parasitic uncle Sir Toby, her gullible suitor Sir Andrew, encouraged by Toby, her gentle woman Maria, her “allowed fool” Feste, and Fabian, also in her service, join to trick Malvolio, her somber, haughty and puritanical steward, an enemy of them all. “Dost thou think because thou art virtuous there shall be no more cakes and ale?” Toby asks him. Presently, told by a forged letter (ostensibly Olivia’s, actually Maria’s) that Olivia is infatuated with him, Malvolio takes to himself the phrase: “Some are born great, some achieve greatness, some have greatness thrust upon ‘em.”
Obeying the false command to appear before his mistress smiling and in absurdly cross-gartered yellow stockings (“a fashion she detests”, “a colour she abhors”), Malvolio is carried off (Act III) to a dark cell as a presumed madman. Sebastian, whom we have realized by now was saved (believing his sister lost), has reached the town with his rescuer Antonio, a piratical captain who had once fought against Orsino’s ships. The plotters have persuaded Andrew, jealous of Olivia’s obvious love for Cesario, to challenge the page to a duel; while this is being scrambled though, Antonio arrives, mistakes Cesario for Sebastian, draw his sword to help, and is arrested by the Dukes’ officers.
Soon afterwards (Act IV), Toby, believing Sebastian to be Cesario, attacks him and is sternly rebuked by Olivia. Also mistaken, she begs the young man to go with her; he does so, pleasantly bewildered, and in a brief later scene she urges marriage (“Plight me the full assurance of your faith”) and they follow a priest to the chantry. Finally (Act V), confusions are resolved: the twins recognize each other; Viola, herself again, will be Orsino’s Duchess, his “fancy’s queen”; Toby weds Maria; Malvolio, released, swears revenge of “the whole pack of you”; and the comedy fades in Feste’s twilit song.
-from The Pocket Companion to Shakespeare’s Plays by J.C. Trewin
Synopsis for Troilus and Cressida
In the seventh year of the Trojan War, a Trojan prince named Troilus falls in love with Cressida, the daughter of a Trojan priest who has defected to the Greek side. Troilus is assisted in his pursuit of her by Pandarus, Cressida’s uncle. Meanwhile, in the Greek camp, the Greek general, Agamemnon, wonders why his commanders seem so downcast and pessimistic. The wise and crafty Ulysses informs him that the army’s troubles spring from a lack of respect for authority, brought about by the behavior of Achilles, the greatest Greek warrior, who refuses to fight and instead spends his time sitting in his tent with his comrade (and lover) Patroclus, mocking his superiors. Shortly thereafter, a challenge to single combat arrives from Prince Hector, the greatest Trojan warrior, and Ulysses decides to have Ajax, a headstrong fool, fight Hector instead of Achilles, in the hopes that this snub will wound Achilles’s pride and bring him back into the war.
In Troy, the sons of King Priam debate whether it is worthwhile to continue the war--or whether they should return Helen to the Greeks and end the struggle. Hector argues for peace, but he is won over by the impassioned Troilus, who wants to continue the struggle. In the Greek camp, Thersites, Ajax’s foul-mouthed slave, abuses everyone who crosses his path. His master, meanwhile, has been honored by the commanders over the sulking Achilles, and is to fight Hector the next day.
That night, Pandarus brings Troilus and Cressida together, and after they pledge to be forever true to one another, he leads them to a bedchamber to consummate their love. Meanwhile, Cressida’s father, the treacherous Trojan priest Calchas, asks the Greek commanders to exchange a Trojan prisoner for his daughter, so that he may be reunited with her. The commanders agree, and the next morning--to Troilus and Cressida’s dismay--the trade is made, and a Greek lord named Diomedes leads Cressida away from Troy. That afternoon, Ajax and Hector fight to a draw, and after Hector and Achilles exchange insults, Hector and Troilus feast with the Greeks under a flag of truce. As the camp goes to bed, Ulysses leads Troilus to the tent of Calchas, where the Trojan prince watches from hiding as Cressida agrees to become Diomedes’s lover.
The next day, in spite of unhappy premonitions from his wife, sister, and his father, Hector takes the field, and a furious and heartbroken Troilus accompanies him. The Trojans drive the Greeks back, but Patroclus is killed, which brings a vengeful Achilles back into the war, finally. Achilles is unable to defeat Hector in single combat, but he later catches him unarmed and, together with a gang of Greek warriors, slaughters him. Achilles then drags Hector’s body around the walls of Troy, and the play ends with the Trojan warriors retreating to the city to mourn their fallen hero. --www.sparknotes.com
Troilus and Cressida: Act One - 85 min /Act Two - 85 min Twelfth Night Act One 75 min/Act Two - 75 min
Twelfth Night Cast:
Viola - Jennifer Lamourt
Olivia - Mary Russell
Orsino - Andrew Houchins*
Feste - Mary Ruth Ralston
Malvolio - Jeff McKerley*
Sir Toby Belch - Nicholas Faircloth
Sir Andrew Aguecheek - Matt Nitchie
Maria - Kati Grace Morton
Curio - Jonathan Horne
Valentine - Paul Hester*
Captain - Vinnie Mascola
Sailors - Jeff McKerley*, Doug Graham, Joshua Diboll
Antonio - Jonathan Horne
Sebastian - Doug Graham
Fabian - Joshua Diboll
1st Officer - Paul Hester*
2nd Officer - Vinnie Mascola
Priest - Vinnie Mascola
Musicians - Mary Ruth Ralston, Matt Nitchie
Troilus and Cressida Cast:
Prologue - Marcus Durham
Priam - Marcus Durham
Hector - Jonathan Horne
Troilus - Paul Hester*
Paris - Doug Graham
Deiphobus - Marcus Durham
Cassandra - Mary Ruth Ralston
Margarelon - Marcus Durham
Andromache - Janine DeMichele
Aeneas - Eli Jolley
Anthenor - Clarke Weigle
Calchas - Clarke Weigle
Cressida - Rachel Frawley
Alexander - Janine DeMichele
Pandarus - Jeff McKerley*
Agamemnon - Matt Nitchie
Menelaus - Nicholas Faircloth
Helen - Janine DeMichele
Achilles - Vinne Mascola
Ajax - Jay Peterson
Ulysses - Andrew Houchins
Helenus - Marcus Durham
Nestor - Troy Willis*
Diomedes - Chris Rushing
Patroclus - Bryan Lee
Thersites - Joshua Diboll
Myrmidons - Jeff McKerley*, Bryan Lee, Mary Ruth Ralston, Eli Jolley
One in Armor - Janine DeMichele
Greek Servants - Mary Ruth Ralston, Eli Jolley
Paris’ Servant - Eli Jolley
Boy to Troilus - Mary Ruth Ralston
Greek Soldiers - Jeff McKerley*, Doug Graham, Marcus Durham, Joshua Diboll, Janine DeMichele, Nicholas Faircloth, Eli Jolley
Trojan Soldiers - Vinnie Mascola, Bryan Lee, Matt Nitchie, Andrew Houchins*, Joshua Diboll, Mary Ruth Ralston, Clarke Weigle
Trojan Trumpeter - Clarke Weigle
Bardometer RatingHow difficult is this Shakespearean play to grasp? On a scale of 1 to 10.
What does rating this mean?
These are plays you may have read in high school or college. The plot is fairly uncomplicated, though some of the themes may be dense or dark. These plays may include supernatural elements, straight-forward politics, historical content or religious content. (In these cases, we offer a synopsis with important historical or contextual explanations which you may read in the Playbill before the show.) In these plays, there may also be bawdy language and certain adult situations, and the language may be hard to follow for a first-timer.
We recommend this type of play to High School and College Students, casual theatre-goers, people who like mainstream films and reading “The Onion”, and Shakespeare lovers who enjoy delving into the Elizabethan world.
How to prepare for seeing this kind of play: You may wish to read the synopsis we provide (and maybe your notes from Literature Class). Or simply do a small amount of internet research. No worries – you won’t get lost.
Performances this Season
- Romeo and JulietPerformances begin February 05, 2015
- The Winter’s TalePerformances begin March 07, 2015
- The Taming of the ShrewPerformances begin March 26, 2015
- Thornton Wilder’s Our TownPerformances begin April 10, 2015
- The Merchant of VenicePerformances begin May 01, 2015
- CoriolanusPerformances begin May 29, 2015