We are very excited to welcome The Seattle Shakespeare Company to The Merc this weekend for a touring production of Macbeth. With financial assistance from Seattle Shakespeare Company, plus one Shakespeare-passionate Friend of The Merc, this production was made possible as an extra-special add on to our regular season and we are looking forward to it.
Are you wondering what Macbeth is all about? Or do you just want to impress your friends? Well, before you come see the show, you can check out this convenient resource for a who's who and what's what of the play: Macbeth Guide. Skip forward to page 5 and learn about Shakespeare's witchy, magic, murderous, and historic Scottish play in a clear and succinct synopsis.
You may remember Terri Weagant performing her solo show The Amish Project at The Merc last year. We are fortunate to have her return to The Merc stage in the role of Lady Macbeth. She plays alongside Trevor Young Marston in the role of Macbeth. Susanna Burney, Joe Cummings, Joshua Chessin-Yudin, and Anastasia Higham round out the rest of the roles in this pared-down version of the play directed by Annie Lareau.
Saturday, May 16
$15 adults $5 Youth 18 and under
available online or at the door
doors open 30 minutes to showtime
Student art is on display at The Merc for the run of our Children's Theater Production of As You Like It. Robin Neslon Wicks, art teacher at Liberty Bell Junior/Senior High School, curated student work with contributions from eighth graders through seniors. Showcasing a variety of mediums, the work compliments the time period and genre of Shakespeare's play which is currently onstage.
Also on display in The Merc's window is a mural painted by Ashley Watson, senior at LBHS. Ashley's senior project aimed to create an installation for The Merc using only acrylic paint. Her project portrays many of the talented people who represent The Merc's community and recent productions. Ashley invested over 50 hours of studio time planning, drafting, and then painting the mural in order to have it installed for Opening Night of As You Like It.
Join us for the final weekend of As You Like It to view the art. The weekend starts with Pay What You Can Night on Thursday, March 12th and goes through Sunday, March 15th.
Thurs - Sat, show starts at 7:00. Sun matinee starts at 2:00. Tickets available online and at the door. Doors open 30 minutes prior to showtime. Bring your nickels for Nickel Shakespeare scenes performed in the lobby before the show starts.
Rod Molzahn, director of our upcoming kids show, has provided a nice synopsis for As You Like It so that theater-goers know what the heck is going on in Shakespeare's well-loved, and perhaps funniest, comedy. Here's how it goes:
Oliver, the older brother of Orlando, refuses to share the family inheritance with his younger brother. He also refuses to let Orlando go to school. Orlando feels that he is treated worse than the horses.
The old Duke, who had ruled the city for years, has been overthrown by his younger sister, the new Duchess, and banished to the Forest of Arden with his followers.
Orlando agrees to a wrestling match with Charles, the Duchess’ undefeated wrestler. At the wrestling match Orlando and Rosalind, the old Duke’s daughter, meet and fall in love. Orlando defeats Charles. That makes the Duchess angry and she banishes Orlando. Then she banishes Rosalind.
The Duchess’ daughter, Celia, goes with her cousin, Rosalind, and the court jester, Touchstone, to the Forest of Arden to find Rosalind’s father. Rosalind disguises herself as a boy and Celia dresses as a servant to be safer on the journey. In the forest they meet several farmers and shepherds. Rosalind and Celia buy a farm.
Rosalind and Orlando meet in the forest but Orlando doesn’t recognize her because of her disguise but a young shepherdess falls in love with her thinking she is a boy. Celia finds all the confusion very funny as you will when you see the whole play.
As You Like It opens Friday night, March 6th. Doors open at 6:30 and show starts at 7:00. Performances run March 6th - March 15th. Thursday, Friday, Saturday at 7:00. Sunday at 2:00. Purchase tickets online or at the door. $15.00 for adults, $5 for kids. Pay What You Can Night is Thursday, March 12th.
Here at The Merc, our Artistic Director Ki spends a good deal of time thinking about our season and planning what shows we will produce. Many factors contribute to the decision: cast size, cost of production, set size, costumes, what we've produced in the past..the algorithm to figure it all out is staggering. That said, sometimes in the middle of all the planning, serendipity steps in and provides us with amazing opportunities. Such is the case with some of our upcoming events that center around a common theme we didn't necessarily intend, but that we plan to maximize: CLASSICS!
You may have noticed that at the moment we are diving deep into Shakespeare. Don't be afraid! Shakespeare is awesome! I might be an English teacher that will never let go...but really, if you digest it the way we like to offer it - Shakespeare is fun, entertaining, totally understandable, and not to be missed at The Merc. Trust us...you'll love it.
Our Shakespeare fever got started with the raucous cowboy-themed version of Twelfth Night that we offered last summer. It was a great production full of confused identity, bawdy jokes, and scheming tricksters. Classic, laugh-out-loud Shakespeare that audiences enjoyed.
After Twelfth Night, we teamed up with a Shakespeare expert to direct our Children's Theater production this year. It seemed natural to present kids' Shakespeare in the season following our adult production. Rod Molzahn joined us to direct As You Like It and we are certain you'll love what he and the cast are doing with this production. We'll be blogging some details on the plot and characters closer to the production to help you prepare for what you'll see onstage and fully engage with the all-kid cast. They are hard at work in rehearsals now. As You Like It opens on March 6th and runs two weekends.
Then, along came another Classic opportunity. Director Rod Molzahn is a stellar, award-winning performer himself. He brings Shakespeare to life onstage in a one man show he created called A Visit with Will. In the midst of directing our children's show, he agreed to a benefit performance for one night only at The Merc. Join us February 13th at 7:00 PM to see him in action as The Bard.
The Classic fun doesn't stop there. Even after we planned all of this, The Seattle Shakespeare Company contacted us to bring a touring production to The Merc. We had to accept their offer when we learned the lead actress is Terry Weagant who performed The Amish Project here last year and has local family ties in the Methow. The Seattle Shakespeare company will bring Macbeth to our stage on May 16th at 7:00 PM and Terry will be playing Lady Macbeth. You do not want to miss this! Again, plot and character details forthcoming.
What could possibly be next? Another Classic opportunity. This spring at Seattle University, where she is the Theatre Department Chair, Ki is directing a production of Picnic, the classic play by Inge (Bus Stop & Splendor in the Grass). Through a generous grant from Seattle University, Ki will bring the production on tour to The Merc's stage. We are very excited for yet another opportunity to present a theatre classic to our friends and audiences. Picnic will be onstage Friday and Saturday, May 22nd and 23rd to round out the Memorial Day Weekend festivities.
There is something for everyone in all of these upcoming productions that we have scheduled. Stay tuned for further details on each production, plus discounted ticket deals!
See ya at The Merc!