Buy Tickets From the 2013-2014 Season: The Romance Repertory: The Taming of the Shrew, Romeo and Juliet, Much Ado About Nothing Playing January 31, 2014 to March 30, 2014
The Taming of the Shrew
Feb 9, 16, 21, 27
March 2, 8, 14, 20, 23, 29, 2014 (in repertory)
Directed by Jeff Watkins
This tale of the fiery and highly comedic romance of Kate and Petruchio still entertains after 400+ years but the debate still stands: just who tames whom?
Romeo and Juliet
$15 Previews January 30 & 31
Runs February 1, 2, 6, 7, 14, 15, 22, 28
March 6, 9, 15, 21, 27, 30, 2014 (in repertory)
Directed by Matt Felten
We invite you to join us for our 14th anniversary of performing this play about young lovers, feuding families and one Friar with good intentions.Join the cast and crew members for a lively Question and Answer session on Sunday March 9 after the show!
Much Ado About Nothing
Runs February 8, 13, 20, 23
March 1, 7, 13, 16, 22, 28, 2014 (in repertory)
Directed by J. Tony Brown
Shakespeare’s second-famous “battle of the sexes” play. Will Benedick, the ever-confirmed bachelor, admit his love for the equally witty and equally independent Beatrice? Will the young lovers Claudio and Hero survive the devious meddling of others? What do you want to bet there will be two weddings in the end?Join the cast and crew members for a lively Question and Answer session on Sunday March 16 after the show!
Read the Plot Synopsis
THE TAMING OF THE SHREW synopsis
By Drew Reeves
Lucentio and his servant, Tranio, arrive in Padua to experience the city’s arts and culture. Soon after their arrival they witness Baptista Minola, a very rich man, negotiating with suitors for the hand of his youngest daughter, Bianca. Baptista will not allow Bianca to be married until his oldest daughter, Katherine, is wed, yet Katherine is considered by all to be a ‘shrew’, an ill-tempered woman prone to violence towards others. Baptista invites the suitors to find tutors for his daughters to help win favor. Lucentio falls in love with Bianca, and decides to disguise himself as a tutor so he can get closer to her, while Tranio will disguise himself as Lucentio to distract Baptista and negotiate a monetary agreement for the hand of Bianca.
Petruchio arrives with his servant Grumio, seeking to find a wealthy woman to wed. He goes to his good friend Hortensio, who is one of Bianca’s suitors, and he tells Petruchio of Katherine. Petruchio agrees to wed Katherine, and Hortensio plans to disguise himself as a tutor so he can get closer to Bianca.
Petruchio meets Katherine and a battle of wit and strong wills ensues. He tells Baptista he will marry her, and they agree upon the dowry. Baptista then tells ‘Lucentio’ (the disguised Tranio) that he can marry Bianca if he can prove that his father will assure him of his inheritance. Tranio decides he has to find someone to pretend to be Lucentio’s father, Vincentio.
Petruchio is late to his agreed upon wedding day, and when he finally arrives, he and his servant are dressed and behave in a very odd manner. This continues through the wedding, and he finally forcibly takes Kate away before the wedding feast.
Petruchio and Kate arrive at his house in Verona, and he begins treating his servants in the same manner Kate was earlier treating the suitors and him. For several days, he denies her food, new clothes, and behaves in a very erratic manner. He finally agrees that they will return to Padua to see her father. On the road home, Kate disagrees with Petruchio, and she finally begins to understand his behavior.
Meanwhile, back in Padua, Lucentio has revealed who he really is to Bianca, she falls for him, and they secretly marry, which they are able to do because Tranio as ‘Lucentio’ has brought in a fake father ‘Vincentio’. The real Vincentio arrives with Kate and Petruchio, and all of the deceptions are exposed, but it is too late, Lucentio and Bianca are married.
All then gather for a wedding feast with three married couples (Hortensio has married a wealthy widow who also proves to be a ‘shrew’). Petruchio bets with the other men that his wife is the most obedient, and Kate wins the bet when she delivers a speech about a woman’s duty to her husband and a man’s duty to his wife.
Romeo and Juliet Synopsis
After a brawl between the rival families of Montague and Capulet, the Prince threatens with death anyone who “disturbs our streets again.” Romeo, Montague’s heir, masked at a Capulet dance, becomes infatuated with Capulet’s daughter, Juliet. From the garden he overhears her avowal as she stands on her balcony and their love scene follows. Next afternoon Friar Lawrence marries them in secret.
When Romeo refuses to fight with Tybalt, a passionate Capulet (who is now his cousin by marriage), the gallant Mercutio takes the challenge himself. He is killed by mischance, and Romeo, enraged, kills Tybalt. In his absence the Prince banishes him; the Friar tells him to stay the night with Juliet and then wait in Mantua until recall is possible. When Juliet’s father insists that she shall marry a young nobleman, Paris, and she gets no aid from either her mother or her nurse, the Friar gives her an opiate (to take on the following night) that will put her in a death-like trance for “two-and-forty hours.” She will be laid in the Capulet vault; when she wakes, Romeo will be there.
Juliet is duly placed in the vault as dead, but the Friar’s messenger to Mantua miscarries; hearing only of Juliet’s “death”, Romeo hastens to the tomb at night and is surprised by Paris whom he kills; in the vault he drinks poison he has bought from a Mantuan apothecary, and dies by Juliet’s side. She wakes as the desperate Friar enters, and on seeing Romeo dead, stabs herself. The Prince and the heads of the families are roused; over the bodies of their children Capulet and Montague are reconciled.
-The Pocket Companion to Shakespeare’s Plays by J C Trewin
Much Ado About Nothing Synopsis
Leonato, Governor of Messina, is host to Don Pedro, the Prince of Arragon, who has come from suppressing a rebellion by his bastard brother, Don John. With Pedro are John, now “reconciled” to him; Claudio, a young Florentine lord, of whom John is bitterly resentful; and a Paduan lord, Benedick, said to be a confirmed bachelor and engaged in a “merry war” with Leonato’s niece, Beatrice, apparently a confirmed spinster. Claudio loves Leonato’s daughter, Hero; Don John swears to thwart him. After a masked ball the wedding of Claudio and Hero is planned. Borachio, Don John’s follower, tells him that having seen that the Prince and Claudio are listening, he will exchange love vows by night with Hero’s gentlewoman, dressed in her mistress’s clothes, at Hero’s bedroom window.
Pedro, Claudio and Leonato ensure that Benedick (hidden in a garden arbour) hears them discuss Beatrice’s presumably passionate love for him. Hero and Ursula play a similar trick on the listening Beatrice (here the passion is Benedick’s). On the night before the wedding Don John offers to give the Prince and Claudio proof of Hero’s unfaithfulness. Later, Borachio heard boasting about his successful deceit to a drunken comrade, is arrested by the Watch and taken to Dogberry, the constable. Before Leonato can know anything, the wedding ceremony is due. In the church Claudio denounces Hero, who faints. The Prince proposed that Hero who be reported dead and hidden until the truth is known. Beatrice, much grieved, urges Benedick to kill Claudio. At length all is revealed and the penitent Claudio promises to marry a niece of Leonato, said to be the image of the “dead” Hero. She is, of course, Hero herself; Beatrice and Benedick, as expected, resolve their “merry war,” and news comes that Don John has been taken prisoner.
-The Pocket Companion to Shakespeare’s Plays by J C Trewin
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Bardometer RatingHow difficult is this Shakespearean play to grasp? On a scale of 1 to 10.
What does rating this mean?
You may already know the story and what happens at the end. But even if you don’t, the play is light and the plot is easy to follow. Limited violence, limited bawdiness (though please note that Shakespeare was a bawdy writer, you can’t escape it in any of his plays). There are very few things – historical, religious, or political – that you need to know ahead of time. Just enjoy!
We recommend this type of play to families, school-age kids, first-timers to Shakespeare, or anyone who just wants to do something fun on a night off. This type of play is perfect for large groups like birthday parties or special event gatherings.
How to prepare for seeing this kind of play: Just show up! You don’t need to know the play to follow along and enjoy.
Performances this Season
- Charles Dickens’ A Christmas CarolPerformances begin December 05, 2013
- Taming of the Shrew and Timon of Athens (January Repertory)Performances begin January 02, 2014
- The Romance Repertory: The Taming of the Shrew, Romeo and Juliet, Much Ado About NothingPerformances begin January 31, 2014
- MacbethPerformances begin April 05, 2014
- The Comedy of ErrorsPerformances begin May 10, 2014
- Antony and CleopatraPerformances begin June 07, 2014