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News Release

Othello Canceled: The Taming of the Shrew to Replace April 21 Performance

National Shakespeare Company performance of Othello originally set for Wednesday, April 21, at Moravian College has been canceled. The actor cast as Othello very recently quit the tour to pursue other employment opportunities. The Company does not have an understudy and therefore the Othello performance had to be canceled. The National Shakespeare Company, based in New York City, will present another of its performances, "The Taming of the Shrew" in place of Othello. The Taming of the Shrew is a rollicking, bawdy comedy that examines the nature of love and relationships. It is notjust a baffle of the sexes, but a baffle of wills between two strong and independent individuals.

People who already have a ticket to "Othello" may use those at the door, and those who have not yet picked up a ticket will get one that reads "Othello." Anyone who purchased a ticket may get a reflind by returning the ticket to the place of purchase, either the HUB desk or the Music Department Office. Moravian College apologizes on behalf of the National Shakespeare Company for the inconvenience. The College thanks the community for support of this and other Arts & Lectures programs.

The National Shakespeare Company will perform taming of the Shrew on Wednesday, 21, at 7:30 p.m. in Foy Concert Hall. Tickets are available in the Music Office and at thedesk. General admission is $10, $5 for senior citizens and LVAIC students.

Moravian College Arts & Lectures will be host to The National Shakespeare Company for a performance of The Taming of the Shrew on April 21. Now in its 36E season, The National Shakespeare Company is performing Shrew for the first time in seven years. Seeing Shakespeare performed live on stage, as it was originally intended to be experienced, is nothing like reading it on the page. And when the play is Shrew, it's sure to leave you with something to think about! In addition to the audience being highly entertained by the broad comedy and hijinks in The Taming of the Shrew, they will be left with much to consider concerning the equality, or inequality, in relationships, both during the play's time and in the present.

When William Shakespeare wrote The Taming of the Shrew four hundred years ago, the women's rights movement was hardly a controversial issue. Society was run by men and a woman's place did not exist outside of the home. How exceptional to act the part of a proper lady, like her younger sister, Bianca. While numerous suitors compete for affention, Petruchio, attracted by her father's considerable wealth, is alone in courting Kate. Tough Petruchio has professed his desire to wed Kate, her father cautions him that he must win Kate's love, before he can claim her dowry.

Petruchio is willing to go to any length to win Kate's affection and have her agree tomarry him. How Petruchio goes about this provides much of the humor of The Taming of the Shrew. Yet in doing so, he subjects her to so many indignities that even director Jessica Bauman finds the play troubling. "It is hard to watch what happens to Kate and find it flinny" she says. By the end of The Taming of the Shrew, Kate is a drastically changed person. According to Bauman, "She has lost the spark in her personality that made her so fabulous! I amsad for her. There is not a place for her in the world Shakespeare is depicting."

The challenges in presenting The Taming of the Shrew are many, for both the cast and director. For Bauman, it is extremely important to show the humor, which runs throughout the play, while not making light of what happens to Kate. "Some of the laughter is pretty dark," cautions Bauman, for anyone expecting a traditional laugh-out-loud comedy. Shakespeare often used comedy to teach us something about love and relationships. For Bauman, the play shows us the lengths to which people are willing to go to get married in a rigid social structure. Even though Shrew takes place in a different period than our own, the characters' struggles to find suitable mates are, no doubt still relevant for today's audience.

The National Shakespeare Company's presentation of The Taming of the Shrew is a theatrical juggling act mixing physical comedy with a deeper appreciation for human nature.Petruchio must be likable, even charming, at the same time that he is manipulating Kate into becoming the type of woman acceptable to society. Though he has a beffer understanding of his nature at the play's end, Petruchio comes to realize that there is a cost to be paid for his actions.

"The audience is going to love the entire cast" offers Bauman enthusiastically. "They are young, expert actors, and passionate about making the play come alive." Based in New York City, The National Shakespeare tours the country each year, delighting audiences from the college towns of Massachuseffs to the heart of Texas. The cast is composed of eight actors, careflilly chosen following a demanding audition process. Whether you have seen Shakespeare performed before or not the company places a special emphasis on making sure the story and language are crystal clear. The Taming of the Shrew is definitely not to be missed!