**Oddfellows Playhouse Summer Shakespeare Academy presents mainstage performances of the intriguing problem play, /Measure for Measure/, and the romantic comedy, /The Taming of the Shrew/, two of William Shakespeare’s best –loved works, on July 23-26. These productions are the culmination of an intensive 4-week Shakespeare-in-Performance program for high school students and feature 18 talented teenagers from throughout central Connecticut.
/The Taming of the Shrew/, directed by Mariah Sage, and /Measure for Measure/, directed by Jeffery Allen, contrast the brilliance of one of the Bard’s earliest comedies with that of his last. Both deal with issues of power and male dominance in a comic fashion, but with radically different approaches. /The Taming of the Shrew/ presents the volatile courtship and married life of Kate and Petruchio, a play which lampoons chauvinistic behavior while simultaneously reaffirming its social validity. /Measure for Measure/, on the other hand, is a studied satire on the corruption of power, as the novitiate Isabella is faced with an unbearable choice to save her brother’s life.
Oddfellows’ Summer Shakespeare Academy, led by Jeffery Allen, combines training and production for students ages 14-18. Meeting daily from June 30-July 25, the challenging and fun program offers training in acting and movement, stage combat, text analysis, voice, diction, improvisation, and understanding Shakespeare’s historical and cultural background. The last three weeks of the program also include individual coaching and intensive rehearsals.
All performances will be at Oddfellows Playhouse, 128 Washington Street, Middletown. /Measure for Measure /will be performed on July 23 and 25at 7:30 pm; /The Taming of the Shrew/ will be on July 24 and 26 at 7:30 pm. Tickets are $12 for adults and $8 for students and seniors. Group rates available. For reservations or more information call Oddfellows Playhouse at (860) 347-6143.//