This week Anna and Maggie discuss Santa Barbara Shakespeare’s return to Manning Park in Montecito with its second ever Shakespearean production of As You Like It, directed by our Anna Jensen. Joining the discussion are Lindsey Twigg, Matt Smith, and Blake Benlan.
Performance Dates/Times: October 13th at 4pm, and October 14th at 12pm and 4pm.
One of his most popular comedies, As You Like It contains everything one wishes for in a Shakespearean romance‒ nobility, convoluted love webs and mistaken identities. Duke Frederick has usurped the court from his brother Duke Senior, the rightful ruler, and banishes him to the forest of Arden. Caught in the middle of the power clash between the dukes, their respective daughters, Rosalind and Celia, escape the oppression of court life in favor of the forest of Arden. Meanwhile, Oliver from the household of the deceased Sir Rowland de Boys refuses to pay for his brother’s schooling, treating him like a servant out of jealousy of his popularity.” Disguises and confusions get in the way of love and result in hilarious love triangles that only a ‘magical transformation’ can fix.
Director Jensen states, “As You Like It” delights audiences with its central love story. Shakespeare has flipped the generic courtship by allowing the heroine, Rosalind, to control “how the love story progresses.” Her playful disguise as a young man while she and her friends adventure in the forests of Arden invites comparison to our culture interest in the the elasticity of gender roles, attraction, and our notions of identity.” An all-locals cast including Brittany Harder as Rosalind, Matthew Smith as Orlando, and Danielle Draper as Celia bring Shakespeare’s words to life. Although the content is suitable for all ages, the performance is best enjoyed by people ages 10 and over. Admission is “pay what you will,” with a suggested donation of 10$ Bring along blankets, hats, drinks— alcohol is permitted in the park —and picnic foods to enjoy a light-hearted Shakespearean performance Saturday 13th at 4pm and Sunday 14th at 12pm and 4pm in area A/2 on the upper end of Manning Park!
About Santa Barbara Shakespeare
Santa Barbara Shakespeare in a new non-profit company consisting of a group of collaborative artists, organized by founder Melissa Marino. A recent college graduate returned to Santa Barbara, Melissa created the company to bring more community theatre- particularly Shakespeare- to her beautiful hometown. Santa Barbara Shakespeare strives to create high-quality artistic works which are both enjoyable and accessible for performers and audience members alike. Throughout the week the group meets in public and outdoor spaces to rehearse and build an entertaining, interactive, and physical show.