Shakespeare Sideshows

Another As You Like It Reunion

Cast

  • Rosalind.....Rosalind Smith
  • Celia.....Gillian Rains
  • Touchstone.....Kathleen Poe
  • Audrey.....Christine Nicholson
  • Phoebe.....Kelly Serena
  • Silvius.....Joe Kowalski
  • Duke Senior/Duke Frederic.....Tim Sapunor
  • Orlando.....Terry Randolph
  • Oliver.....Bryce Huckaby
  • Corin.....John Paul Nevans
  • Lady Attendant.....Raina Bahadur
  • Hamlet.....Matt Malone
  • Jaques.....Sarah Palmero
  • Charles.....Matt Matson
  • Director......Luther Hanson
  • Dramaturg......Jessica Sager
  • ASM......Emmy Harmon & Suzanne Halka
  • Costume Designer......Rebecca Redmond

Festival Administration

  • Box Office Coordinator......Lori Ann DeLappe-Grondin
  • House Manager......Lori Ann DeLappe-Grondi
  • Postcard Design......Bill McCloskey
  • Publicity......Lori Ann DeLappe-Grondin, Luther Hanson, Peter Mohrmann & Christine Nicholson
  • Webmaster......Steven Grondin
  • Photographer......Steve Grondin

Los Rios Board of Trustees

Jenn Galinato, Pamela Haynes, Dustin Johnson, Robert Jones, John Knight, Tami Nelson, Deborah Ortiz & Kelly Wilkerson

Acknowledgements

SPECIAL THANKS TO Dean Patti Leonard and the Division of Humanities and Fine Arts, Carrie Bray, Vice President of Administrative Services, and Alex Adan at Sacramento City College, and Ron Dumonchelle. And to the entire cast for their generous loans of personal costume items.

Resources

Dramaturg's Notes, by Jessica Sager

As You Like It: A Reunion

One of Shakespeare’s most famous comedies, As You Like It follows a large cast of witty characters who get lost - and find themselves - in the forest of Arden. The banished Duke holds court with his loyal followers deep in the forest, while his corrupt younger brother, Frederick, rules the old court. The Duke’s daughter, Rosalind, and her cousin Celia are trapped in Frederick’s court when the play begins. After Rosalind is unfairly exiled, the two escape together to find freedom in the forest. They are accompanied by a fool, Touchstone. Orlando, a young gentleman in love with Rosalind, also flees to Arden after winning a match against the professional wrestler Charles only to fall out of favor with Frederick shortly after.

Disguised as a young man named Ganymede, Rosalind gets to know Orlando better while supposedly “curing” him of his love. Meanwhile, country lovers Silvius and Phoebe get caught up in the charade when Phoebe falls in love with Ganymede, unaware “he” is really a woman. Touchstone courts unsophisticated country girl Audrey. Jaques, a melancholy lord loyal to the exiled Duke, enjoys antagonizing the lovesick Orlando but greatly admires Touchstone.

Our heroes aren’t the only ones transformed by Arden. Oliver, Orlando’s wicked older brother, finds redemption and love with Celia in the forest. Even Frederick, intent on war, finds peace after meeting a hermit and choosing a religious life over his corrupt court. The play ends with four couples - Rosalind and Orlando, Celia and Oliver, Phoebe and Silvius, and Touchstone and Audrey - married. The Duke is restored to his former power, and Jaques joins Frederick and the hermit in their religious life. All live (more or less) happily ever after.

Or do they?

In Another As You Like It Reunion, Luther Hanson asks what happens to characters when they outlive their own play. Once the comedy is over, what happens to the loving couples and their friends? Tonight, we check in with Rosalind and her theatrical family 400 years later to see how they are liking it in the twenty-first century.

Henry IV, Part One, Restored? The William Davenant Version

Cast

  • William Davenant.....John Paul Nevans
  • Richard (plays Hal).....Joe Kowalski
  • Jeffrey (plays Hotspur).....Terry Randolph
  • John (plays Falstaff).....Mitch Worrell-Olsen
  • Katherine (plays Lady Hotspur).....Gillian Rains
  • Olivia.....Raina Bahadur
  • Peter (and, as Peter, a decoy Henry.....Matthew Malone
  • Beatrice (Mistress Quickly).....Erin Smith
  • Edmund (King Henry, Traveler).....Tim Sapunor
  • Delivery Guy (and decoy Henry).....Matt Matson
  • King Richard’s Ghost.....Tim Sapunor
  • Women’s Chorus
  • Rosalind Smith (with Lute)
  • Raina Bahadur
  • Erin Smith
  • Gillian Rains (with Lute)

Artistic Staff

  • Director......Luther Hanson
  • Dramaturg......Jessica Sager
  • ASM......Emmy Harmon & Suzanne Halka
  • Costume Designer......Rebecca Redmond

Festival Administration

  • Box Office Coordinator......Lori Ann DeLappe-Grondin
  • House Manager......Lori Ann DeLappe-Grondi
  • Postcard Design......Bill McCloskey
  • Publicity......Lori Ann DeLappe-Grondin, Luther Hanson, Peter Mohrmann & Christine Nicholson
  • Webmaster......Steven Grondin
  • Photographer......Steve Grondin

Los Rios Board of Trustees

Jenn Galinato, Pamela Haynes, Dustin Johnson, Robert Jones, John Knight, Tami Nelson, Deborah Ortiz & Kelly Wilkerson

Acknowledgements

SPECIAL THANKS TO Dean Patti Leonard and the Division of Humanities and Fine Arts, Carrie Bray, Vice President of Administrative Services, and Alex Adan at Sacramento City College, and Ron Dumonchelle. And to the entire cast for their generous loans of personal costume items.

Resources

Dramaturg's Notes, by Jessica Sager

Restoration, William Davenant, and Henry IV: Part One

Welcome to 1664, four years into the English Restoration. The strict Commonwealth of Oliver Cromwell is over, Charles II is king, and public theatre has returned to London after an absence of almost twenty years. Naturally, this new theatre includes the work of William Shakespeare.

Enter another William, Sir William Davenant, the Bard of Avon’s own godson. Rumored to be Shakespeare’s actual son as well, Davenant was born in 1606 and enjoyed success in the theatre both before and after the English Civil War. During the war, he served the royal family faithfully and was knighted by Charles I in 1643. Later, he joined the exiled English court in Paris. After Charles I’s execution, Davenant was named lieutenant governor of Maryland, but on his way to the colonies he was captured and imprisoned in the Tower of London till 1654.

Throughout his life, Davenant was an avid theatre maker as well as a poet. He wrote plays before the Civil War, after the Restoration, and even during the Commonwealth period. He was the English court’s poet laureate from 1638 until his death in 1668. After the Restoration and Charles II’s ascent to the throne, Davenant was given a patent to start an acting company. While Davenant wrote many of his own plays, he is perhaps best known today for adaptations of his godfather’s work.

Along with other playwrights, Davanent would take Shakespeare's plays and adapt them for Restoration audiences. Take his Tempest, for example. Collaborating with John Dryden, he took Shakespeare’s fantastical romance and, with the help of some brand-new characters, turned it into a bawdy Restoration comedy. And then there was his Macbeth, complete with a chorus of singing, dancing witches. In 2018, this version was revived and performed by the Folger Theatre and Folger Consort.

In Henry IV, Part One, Restored? playwright Luther Hanson imagines what Davenant might have done with another of Shakespeare’s plays. Would Davenant have left this epic story of war and family alone, or would he have changed it as drastically as other Shakespeare plays? For example, would he have tried to make the final, tragic battle between Prince Hal and Hotspur more palatable for a boisterous Restoration audience? And what of Prince Hal’s journey from wayward youth to future king? Would Shakespeare’s original character arc have been good enough for Davenant and his actors, or would they have felt the need to…..improve it? And finally, how would Davenant’s cast and crew have reacted to changes in the script and extravagant special effects?

Snug, The Lion: A Play

Cast

  • Snug, A Joiner......Matt Matson
  • Anna, his wife......Christine Nicholson
  • Felicity, his eldest daughter......Mia Matista
  • Hope, his youngest daughter......Rosalind Smith
  • Jonathan, his apprentice......Mitchell Worrell-Olson
  • Robert, in love with Felicity......Terry Randolph
  • Peter Quince, a friend......Kathleen Poe
  • Sarah, Quince's wife......Erin Smith
  • Nick Bottom......Sarah Palmero
  • Flute......Matthew Malone
  • Snout......Joseph Kowalski
  • Starveling......Raina Bahadur
  • Lord Betterman, Robert's father......John Paul Pressburg-Nevans
  • Old William, a neighbor......Tim Sapunor

Artistic Staff

  • Director......Luther Hanson
  • Dramaturg......Jessica Sager
  • ASM......Emmy Harmon & Suzanne Halka
  • Costume Designer......Rebecca Redmond

Resources

Dramaturg's Notes, by Jessica Sager

Snug’s World and A Midsummer Night’s Dream

Our hero, Snug the joiner and sometimes lion, will be familiar to fans of Shakespeare’s popular comedy, A Midsummer Night’s Dream. Dream tells the story of different worlds colliding on a magical night. The setting is ancient Athens and its nearby woods, though this genre-bending play takes certain….liberties with both geography and culture.

The first of Dream’s intertwining plots concerns Duke Theseus and his fiancee, Hippolyta. These two former foes are from ancient mythology, and as the play opens they discuss their upcoming wedding. Four young lovers create the next plot. Lysander and Demetrius both wish to marry Hermia, while Hermia’s close friend, Helena, pines for Demetrius. When Lysander and Hermia elope, Demetrius and Helena follow them into the woods, where fairies live. Inspired by both ancient mythology and English folklore, the fairies are divided as their king and queen feud with each other. Finally, we have Snug and his friends, the “mechanicals” or working men who are far more English than Greek. Though commoners, these men can read and write; they have some knowledge of mythology and enjoy seeing plays. Though not terribly sophisticated, they are nonetheless Renaissance men.

The mechanicals stumble into the romantic, magical world of young lovers, heroes, and fairies when they decide to write, direct, and perform an ancient tragedy for the duke’s wedding. Well-meaning but overwhelmed, the men struggle with metatheatrical questions. What if the audience takes the play too seriously? How will they know what is real, and what isn’t? More practical concerns, such as how to represent moonlight on stage, also trouble the men.

But all these concerns fade when the amateur troupe’s leading man, Nick Bottom the weaver, inadvertently becomes part of a fairy prank. Puck, a mischievous hobgoblin, turns Bottom’s head into that of a donkey. Oblivious to his own transformation, Bottom manages to accidentally terrify his friends before spending an unforgettable night with the fairies. Thankfully, Bottom is turned back into himself the next morning, just in time to star as the tragic hero Pyramus.

By the time the mechanicals’ play opens, the fairy king and queen have reconciled. Theseus and Hippolyta are married along with the four young lovers, Demetrius having (with some magical help) fallen back in love with Helena. The nobles gather to watch the play, a mythological tragedy that comes off as comedy in the mechanicals’ inexperienced hands.

To the nobles, these actors are simply amusing, laughable and perhaps even pitable. But who are these men outside the world of theatre? What other talents do they possess? Who are their families? In Snug, the Lion, playwright Luther Hanson provides delightful answers as well as some new insights on these rather English Athenians.