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Location: Lincoln, Nebraska

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Better a Witty Fool Than a Foolish Wit

The award-winning Flatwater Shakespeare Company proudly presents its Summer 2012 open-air production, Twelfth Night by William Shakespeare.

Directed by Bob HallTwelfth Night 
will run Wednesday through Sunday evenings, June 13 - June 24, 7:00 p.m. (note earlier starting time), at The Lincoln Community Foundation Garden, located on “N” Street, between 14th and Centennial Mall, in downtown Lincoln.

The show will then play Thursday through Sunday evenings, June 28 – July 8 at eight Lincoln area parks and other outdoor venues. Last year's production and tour of A Midsummer Night's Dream has earned Flatwater Shakespeare a Mayor's Arts Award for Outstanding Event, to be presented on June 18. 

Call 402-473-2897 for performance information.

Twelfth Night, or What You Will is one of Shakespeare's most romantic comedies, featuring twins, pirates, lovers, scoundrels, clowns, disguises, and mistaken identities. It comes with music, duels, romance, and ribaldry.

Viola is separated from her twin brother, Sebastian, after being shipwrecked on the coast of Illyria. She assumes a male identity, Cesario, and becomes a trusted attendant of Count Orsino. While serving as a messenger in Orsino's pursuit of the Lady Olivia, Viola finds that Olivia has instead fallen in love with “Cesario.” Making matters even more complicated is Viola's own growing love for Orsino. Meanwhile, Olivia is also being courted by the foolish Sir Andrew Aguecheek, an acquaintance of Olivia's uncle, the bibulous Sir Toby Belch. Maria, Olivia's lady-in-waiting, devises a trick on Malvolio, who manages Olivia's estate, so that spoilsport Malvolio is convinced that Olivia is in love with him. As Viola asks: “How will this fadge?” (That's Shakespearean for “How can all this work out?”) As Feste the wise jester observes: “Better a witty fool than a foolish wit.”

Director Hall has again assembled a stellar cast, highlighting the strengths of the Flatwater Shakespeare Company ensemble. Maggie Austin plays Viola, who pretends to be Cesario. Nathan Weiss is the love-struck Orsino and Summer Widhalm the much-pursued Olivia. Richard Nielsen is Malvolio, who falls victim to the schemes of Tom Crew's Sir Toby, Marie Barrett's Maria, and Clay Stevens's Sir Andrew. Andy Dillehay is the musical and melancholy jester Feste. Other Flatwater Shakespeare veterans include Richard Imig, Mike Lee, John Marinovich, and Cory Misek. Joining the ensemble are Michael De La Rosa and Shade Ingraham.

Joining Bob Hall's creative team are Janice Stauffer, costumes; Richard Schroeder, lighting; Michelle Zinke, stage manager; and Stephen Buhler, dramaturg. The production tour is coordinated by Andy Dillehay.

The production and tour have received generous support from the Lincoln Community Foundation and the Woods Charitable Fund and are being presented in cooperation with The Lincoln Department of Parks and Recreation, First Plymouth Church and Wyuka Cemetery, Ivanna Cone and The Haymarket Theatre. In keeping both with our mission to engage new audiences for classic theater, we are offering admission to all performances of Twelfth Night free of charge. We suggest a freewill donation of $10 but our policy is – donate what you can, but just give Shakespeare a try. Come join the fun under the stars!

The Production and Touring Schedule:
June 13-17 and 20-24 – Lincoln Community Foundation Garden (near 14th and N)
June 28 – Antelope Park (27th and A)
June 29 – Trago Park (22nd and T)
June 30 – Henry Park (44th and Prescott)
July 1 – Wyuka Cemetery (35th and O)
July 5 – First Plymouth Church (20th and D)
July 6 – Havelock Park (62nd and Havelock)
July 7 – Irvingdale Park (19th and Van Dorn)
July 8 – Bethany Park (66th and Vine)

On July 19, 20, and 21, Flatwater Shakespeare and The Haymarket Theatre will stage a Youth version of the play, directed by Rob Burt and Jordan Deffenbaugh. Performances will take place at The Haymarket Theatre, 803 “Q” Street. Showtimes are 7:00 pm all three dates, with a 2:00 pm matinee added on July 21. Call 402-477-2600 for more information. This production has been supported by the Nebraska Humanities Council.


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