August 5-28: The Two Gentlemen of Verona

Sharp-witted, snappy, and thought to have been Shakespeare’s first play, this risible tale was a precursor to today’s popular rom-com.

In this mash-up of shifting loyalties between friends and fleeting attractions of ill-suited young lovers, a merry band of outlaws, clowns, and servants, foolishly stumble through the landscape. Don’t miss “the most scene-stealing nonspeaking role in Shakespeare’s canon”, Crab the dog.

The Two Gentlemen of Verona will run for twelve performances, Friday through Sunday, from August 5th until August 28th, at Chetzemoka Park. All performances will begin at 6:00 PM, and the gate will open for seating at 5:30 PM. Shakespeare in the Park is a pay what you wish event, although advance tickets are available by phone at (360) 385-5278, or online.

Key City Public Theatre is proud to present its 2016 Shakespeare in the Park production: The Two Gentlemen of Verona,  a raucous comedy that examines the many facets of love and friendship through the lens of Shakespeare’s signature sharp wit. Staged in the trappings of the 1967 “Summer of Love,” old verse will come from new mouths, with classic Shakespearian roles re-imagined as hippies, students, outcasts, and activists.

The Two Gentlemen of Verona is directed by Key City’s Artistic Director, Denise Winter, who most recently directed the fifth production worldwide of Wendy MacLeod’s Women in Jeopardy. Playing the leading role of Valentine is Artistic Apprentice Connor Zaft, fresh off his directorial debut with Key City’s production of Shipwrecked!. Joining him as Proteus, the second of the titular gentlemen, is Jason Noltemeier, making his sixth Shakespeare in the Park appearance, most recently in 2015’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream. Emily Huntingford, appearing during the summer break from her drama studies at Whitman College, is making her ninth park appearance as Julia, Proteus’ on again/off again love interest. Joining the production fresh from his leading role in Shipwrecked! is Eric Ray Anderson playing Speed, young Valentine’s servant. Lawrie Driscoll brings his comedic chops to the popular role of Launce, and of course, no production would be complete without Crab the dog.

A lively “Sargent Pepper-esque” band that accompanies the show includes Iain Coates, Austin DeLuna, Mimi Grant (2016 Stars of Tomorrow winner), and Noah Phillips, who back lead singer Joey Ripley, also appearing as Sir Eglamour (aka E. Glamour!) The cast is rounded out by both returning favorites to Port Townsend’s Shakespeare stage as well as new faces including Trillium Burbank, Dylan Carter, Sam Cavallaro, Colleen Dobbin, Kiera DeLuna, Ace Elkins, Blaine Lewis,  D.D.Wigley, with a student ensemble of Mahina Gelderloos, Caleb Lumbard, Ciel Pope, and siblings Emma, Michael & Teegan Dobbin.

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