Category Archive for: ‘Gaetana Caldwell-Smith’
A scene from “Much Ado About Nothing”.
Director Glenn Havlan with dramaturg, Gaby Schneider, has transformed Shakespeare’s “Much Ado About Nothing” into a modern day comedy.
Where Shakespeare is known to have cast men in women’s role, here Havlan turns it around. He mixes it up by casting women in male roles, and, as Shakespeare had done- men as women. He asks the question: “What happens when Shakespeare’s most intricate examination of gender roles is turned inside-out?” For example: Benedick is played by lith, expressive Lijesh Krishnan; Beatrice- as a man, with Lisa Darter in the role. Women also play Leonato (as Leonora), Kim Saunders; Conrade (Mary Waterfield), Borachio (Michah Coate), Balthasar (Nicole Menez, double-cast as Watch 1) ), and Friar Francis (as Reverend Frances), played by Alison Sacha Ross.
The cast is completed with supporting roles by Kristin Anundsen as an attentive Ursula (double-cast as Watch 2), Danielle Doyle as Margaret; Tim Garcia as Don John; and himself, Glenn Havlan as Antonio; Lukas Hoag as Claudio, Gaby Schneider as Hero. Mason Waller provided extra comic relief in the role of constable Dogberry in a beige official uniform of shorts and short-sleeve shirt with requisite badge, with his crime-fighting partner, Verges (Sheila Cress), and Shawn J West as Don Pedro. Though the cast is large, each character is played with with distinction. Havlan’s actors make good use of the expansive Kelly Cullen Community Auditorium, moving through the audience seated in folding chairs on the auditorium floor sectioned off by panels, accessing the stage by a double set of stairs, on which they sometimes sit. A white, wicker garden set sits on the floor to one side where some scenes take place. The stage set consists of floral trellises and benches behind which are projections on the back wall of country villas and landscapes (Lewis Campbell, stage design; Richard Gutierrez, graphic designer; Sara Aylward Brown, photographer)
Havlan’s “Much Ado” is a fast-moving delightful production with stand-out performances by the principals with an excellent supporting cast and should not be missed.
Much Ado About Nothing, adapted by Gaby Schneider and directed by Glenn Havlan.
July 8 – 24. Thursday-Fridays-Saturdays
Kelly Cullen Community Auditorium, 220 Golden Gate Avenue in San Francisco. Two blocks north of the Civic Center BART/Muni station.
Pay-What-You-Will for ALL performances.
Glenn Havlan says: “We-Pay-You Thursdays, July 14 & 21. We will pay you one dollar cash American to see our show. You read that right.”