Friday, August 27, 2021

Theater Memories Part 12: Shakespeare, The Comedies and Romances

Kevin Kline and Blythe Danner
in Much Ado About Nothing
Last time I listed all the Shakespearean tragedies I have seen, so it's time for the comedies and romances. Once again, I am not including TV or film versions because there are too many. This will be just stage versions:

All's Well That Ends Well: Delacorte.

As You Like It: Shakespeare's Globe at the Armory, The Bridge Project at BAM (in rep with The Tempest), CSC with Ellen Burstyn as Jacques.

The Comedy of Errors: Jesse Tyler Ferguson and Hamish Linklater playing both sets of twins at the Delacorte; the Flying Karamazov Brothers in an all-juggling production at Lincoln Center; all-male production at BAM.

Love's Labour's Lost: Stratford Festival; Public Theater.

Measure for Measure: Campbell Scott/Kate Burton/Len Cariou/Jack Weston/Lois Smith (Lincoln Center); twice at the Delacorte: Kevin Kline/LisaGay Hamilton and Billy Crudup/Sanaa Latham; Elevator Repair Service did a really weird, stylized version with everyone talking really fast.

The Merchant of Venice (yes, this is considered a comedy): Al Pacino (Delacorte and the Broadway); Dustin Hoffman (Broadway); Ron Leibman (Public); F. Murray Abraham.

Merry Wives of Windsor: Jocelyn Bioh's adaptation at the Delacorte (this summer); Folger Theater in Washington DC with Pat Carroll as Falstaff.

A Midsummer Night's Dream: I played Snug the Joiner and a fairy in an Off-Off-Broadway production; Broadway production in 1996 with Lindsay Duncan and Alex Jennings (there was a giant umbrella); CSC with Bebe Neuwirth and Anthony Heald; Ridiculous Theatrical Company.

Much Ado About Nothing: Three times at the Delacorte: Kevin Kline/Blythe Danner/Jerry Stiller (1980s), Hamish Linklater/Lily Rabe (2010 or so) and Danielle Brooks/Grantham Coleman (2019) set in modern-day Atlanta; an Off-Off-Broadway production set in the swinging 60s with everyone dressed like Steed and Mrs. Peel; Brian Bedford in a Stratford Festival production at City Center; Derek Jacobi/Sinead Cusack (on Broadway in rep with Cyrano de Bergerac), I believe Sir Derek won the Tony that year.

Pericles: Campbell Scott (Public)

Taming of the Shrew: Allison Janey/Jay O. Sanders (Delacorte); an excellent production at Villanova University; Stratford Festival (excellent production).

The Tempest: Patrick Stewart (Delacorte and then Broadway) amazing production by George C. Wolfe; Frank Langella/BD Wong (Roundabout); Sam Waterston (Delacorte); Bridge Project (BAM in rep with As You Like It); Martha Henry (Stratford Festival); Mandy Patinkin (CSC).

Twelfth Night: Jean Marsh (summer stock, Philadelphia Playhouse in the Park); Domini Blythe and Nicholas Pennell (The Forsythe Saga) (Philadelphia Drama Guild); Mark Rylance and an all-male cast (Broadway); Simon Russell Beale as Malvolio (BAM, in rep with Uncle Vanya); Helen Hunt/Paul Rudd/Kyra Sedgwick (Lincoln Center); three times at the Delacorte--once with F. Murray Abraham as Malvolio, once with Jeff Goldblum, once with Audra MacDonald and Anne Hathaway; the Philadelphia Company in the courtyard of City Hall; CSC.

Two Gentlemen of Verona: Delacorte.

The Winter's Tale: Delacorte (in rep with The Merchant of Venice); Mandy Patinkin/Christopher Reeve/Alfre Woodard (Public Theater)

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