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Oregon Shakespeare Festival’s 2014 Season

Our intent in posting these reviews (see below) is to provide insight to the OSF productions. Hopefully this will help our guests when making decisions on what plays to see when visiting Ashland.  Keep in mind that these reviews are unavoidably biased even though based in our own theatrical knowledge and lifelong experiences of attending plays. Enjoy and see you at the theater.

Don’t forget to visit the Oregon Shakespeare Company’s website (www.osfashland.org) for more information, cast lists and video clips relating to the OSF 2014 Season’s plays.

The Tempest

The Tempest image play review 2014

February 14 - November 2, 2014
Angus Bowmer Theatre        
By William Shakespeare | Directed by Tony Taccone
 

The first show of the season is always exciting, this year in particular because the season opens with “The Tempest”, my personal Shakespeare favorite.  That being said, my expectations are always set high.  The fact that Tony Taccone directed is reason for higher expectations.  That’s always a recipe for disappointment.

Let me state right up front that overall I like the production.  The direction was good, but sometimes not cohesive. There are many elements that work beautifully, and there are some elements that are beautifully executed, but don’t quite fit.  

The set is simple, minimalist, and angular, I liked it. The arrival of Ariel, and later, Caliban on stage was creative.  The dancers were a nice touch, but sometimes distracted from the actual story. Overall the acting was good to fair, but then there was Prospero.  This is where the production failed. Denis Arndt seemed unfocused, detached, and muddled his way through the play. At times we could barely hear him, and we were seated in the second row.  There was very little emotional connection to the character. It was disappointing to say the least, but I’m hoping as time goes on that Mr. Arndt will improve. Perhaps it was first preview jitters, or a case of just focusing on remembering the lines, but without a strong Prospero there is no tempest. The interplay of Ariel and Caliban as psychological   aspects of Prospero’s character was lost.

 

  
 
February 15 - July 3, 2014
Angus Bowmer Theatre
By Lorraine Hansberry | Directed by Juliette Carrillo
 
Look for review of this play shortly after the opening performance.

 

The Cocoanuts

February 16 - November 2, 2014
Angus Bowmer Theatre
Music & lyrics by Irving Berlin | Book by George S. Kaufman
Adapted by Mark Bedard | Directed by David Ivers
 
Look for review of this play shortly after the opening performance.

 

The Comedy of Errors

February 20 - November 2, 2014
Thomas Theatre
By William Shakespeare | Directed by Kent Gash
 
Look for review of this play shortly after the opening performance.
 
 

Water by the Spoonful

March 26 - November 2, 2014
Thomas Theatre
SPLIT RUN:  March 26 - June 20 and September 3 - November 2, 2014
By Quiara Alegría Hudes | Directed by Shishir Kurup
 
Look for review of this play shortly after the opening performance.

A Wrinkle in Time

April 16 - November 1, 2014        
Angus Bowmer Theatre        
Adapted by Tracy Young | From the book by Madeleine L'Engle
World Premiere
 
Look for review of this play shortly after the opening performance.

Richard III

June 3 - October 10, 2014        
Allen Elizabethan Theatre        
By William Shakespeare | Directed by James Bundy
 
Look for review of this play shortly after the opening performance.

Into the Woods

June 4 - October 11, 2014        
Allen Elizabethan Theatre      
Music & lyrics by Stephen Sondheim | Book by James Lapine | Originally directed on Broadway by James Lapine
Orchestrations by Jonathan Tunick | Directed by Amanda Dehnert
 
Look for review of this play shortly after the opening performance.

The Two Gentlemen of Verona

June 5 - October 12, 2014        
Allen Elizabethan Theatre        
By William Shakespeare | Directed by Sarah Rasmussen
 
Look for review of this play shortly after the opening performance.

 

Family Album

July 1 - August 31, 2014
Thomas Theatre        
Book & lyrics by Stew | Music by Stew and Heidi Rodewald | Directed by Joanna Settle
World Premiere
 
Look for review of this play shortly after the opening performance.

 

The Great Society

July 23 - November 1, 2014        
Angus Bowmer Theatre        
By Robert Schenkkan | Directed by Bill Rauch
World Premiere
 
Look for review of this play shortly after the opening performance.