Actors' Theatre of Columbus will begin their 31st season with an exciting swashbuckling world premiere of Robin Hood in German Village's Schiller Park. The park will be transformed into Sherwood Forest beginning Thursday, May 24th.
The English folklore was written for Actors' Theatre by local playwright Philip J. Hickman and co-directed bJohn S. Kuhn, Artistic Director of Actors' Theatre. and Adam Simon. "In writing Robin Hood, I wanted to step away from the superhuman treatment of a folk hero," says Hickman. "I wanted to see Robin, his friends and his enemies as normal people that I could connect with. The Robin Hood legend is relevant because it is about social justice issues that we are still wrestling with. But it's more fun than politics."
Performances begin at 8:00 p.m. every Thursday, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday from Thursday, May 24, to Sunday, June 24.
While often called "Shakespeare in the Park," the theatre company is famous for its productions of classical theatre in the outdoor amphitheatre in beautiful Schiller Park in historic German Village, but this year, the company will also cross the pond for two special productions at the new Columbus Bicentennial Pavilion in Columbus Commons.
After Robin Hood, the Schiller Park Season continues.
The Merchant of Venice, by William Shakespeare, also co-directed by Kuhn and Simon, runs from Thursday, June 28, to Sunday, July 29 at Schiller Park. This is one of William Shakespeare's most well-known and beloved plays. The production offers both sides of the theatrical coin with its moments of lightheartedness, and its exploration of prejudice.
Actors' Theatre finishes their season at Schiller Park with the August 2 to September 2 run of the screwball comedy, The Servant of Two Masters, written by Carlo Osvaldo Goldoni and directed by Pamela Hill. This Italian farce revolves around the misadventures of a hapless servant who is caught in the intertwining lives of two Italian families. It features all the elements one expects from a first rate comedy of manners: mistaken identities, pining lovers, and plenty of hijinks.
In August and September, Actors' Theatre will offer special performances of two well-loved plays at the Columbus Commons.
Starting Friday, August 16, Actors' Theatre will stage weekend performances of The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (abridged), by at Columbus Commons. Written by Adam Long, Daniel Singer and Jess Winfield, and directed by Simon, the production will be performed Thu/Fri/Sat/Sun for two weekends, August 16-19 and August 23-26, concurrently with The Servant of Two Masters, with performances starting at 7:30 PM. "We are very excited to be collaborating with Columbus Commons on this project and we think the audiences will love the plays we will be performing this year," says Kuhn. "For those two August weekends, theatre lovers will get to choose between shows performed by Actors' Theatre at two locations."
The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (abridged), an outrageous parody of all the plays written by Shakespeare, is performed in a much shortened 97-minute form by only three actors. Think Hamlet clocking in at under a minute. "It is a funny, entertaining play that appeals to kids and adults alike, and not just to fans of Shakespeare," says Kuhn.
Actors' Theatre's run at Columbus Commons comes to a close with A Midsummer Night's Dream, which will also run Thu/Fri/Sat/Sun for two weekends, September 13-16 and September 20-23, with performances at 7:30 PM. Directed by Kuhn, A Midsummer Night's Dream, one of Shakespeare's most popular plays, uses life-sized puppets for some of the roles in the Actors' Theatre production. "It is very accessible when performed in this manner, and particularly for children. It is a great way for parents to introduce their children to classical theatre," says Kuhn. Kuhn points out that, as always, all the five summer productions are free.
For additional information, contact Actors' Theatre by email at email@example.com or by phone at (614) 444-6888. Find the theatre on Facebook, Twitter, or YouTube, or visit the official website at TheActorsTheatre.org.