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Shakespeare on the Sound Presents 'Romeo and Juliet'

Shakespeare on the Sound produces an annual free outdoor Shakespeare festival in Connecticut, with performances in public parks in Rowayton and Greenwich.

S H A K E S P E A R E   O N   T H E   S O U N D 

ANNOUNCES COMPLETE CASTING FOR ALL-NEW PRODUCTION OF

“ R O M E O   A N D   J U L I E T ”

SUMMER 2012

PRODUCTION DIRECTED BY 

JOANNA SETTLE

WITH ORIGINAL MUSIC AND SONGS BY

STEW AND HEIDI RODEWALD

Rowayton, CT – Shakespeare on the Sound, Connecticut’s premier outdoor summer theater company, will present a newly conceived production of Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet, under the direction of Joanna Settle,  this June and July for the company’s 17th season. Romeo and Juliet will feature Ali  Ahn (Juliet), David Cale (Friar), Matt Citron (Mercutio), Will Cohn (Benvolio), William Jackson Harper  (Romeo), Rachael Holmes  (Lady Capulet/Tybalt), Damian Lemar Hudson (Singer/Paris), Chinasa Ogbuagu (Nurse), and Tony Torn (Capulet). Shakespeare on the Sound presents an annual production in two beautiful waterfront parks in the towns of Greenwich and Rowayton, and admission is always free of charge.

This year’s production of Romeo and Juliet is conceived as a dinner party among eight friends who have an annual tradition of reading a Shakespeare play on a gorgeous summer’s night.  Over the course of reading the play, the story will take over and guests both on-stage and off will find themselves completely consumed by the momentum and poetry of the events in Shakespeare's great love story.

As previously announced, Stew and Heidi Rodewald will again return to Shakespeare on the Sound  to create all-new music and songs for this production.  Lyrics will be provided  by both Shakespeare and  Stew.  In addition, this year’s production will  kick off with a specially commissioned scene for the show’s dinner party which Stew will write and develop in rehearsal with the show’s acting company.  Also, in a first for Shakespeare on the Sound, the production will premiere in Greenwich and then make its move to Rowayton, playing two locations on Long Island Sound: Baldwin Park in Greenwich (June 26 – July 8, 2012) and Pinkney Park in Rowayton (July 18 – July 29, 2012).

Set Design is by Laura Jellinek, Costume Design is by Tilly Grimes, Lighting Design is by Keith Parham,  Sound System Design is by Jessica Paz,  Sound Design is by Obadiah Eaves, and Choreography is by David Neumann.

Now in its 17thseason,  Shakespeare on the Sound has established itself as one of the most popular summer theater companies on the East Coast, drawing large audiences to each performance in the unique under-the-stars settings of its waterfront venues  – Pickney Park in Rowayton and Roger Sherman Baldwin Park in Greenwich.  

For more information on Shakespeare on the Sound, visit www.shakespeareonthesound.org

Biographies______________________________________________________

Ali Ahn (Juliet). New York:  The Sugar House at the Edge of the Wilderness (Ma-Yi), Twelfth Night, Importance of Being Earnest (The Pearl), House of Bernarda Alba (NAATCO), Lights Rise on Grace(NY Fringe Festival; Outstanding Play),  LaSanta (Ontological). Regional:  Strike-Slip (Humana Festival @ Actors Theatre of Louisville), As You Like It (A Noise Within), Winchester House (Theatre @ Boston Court),  Moonshine (Redcat),  A Midsummer’s Nights Dream (Theatricum Botanicum), New Works Festival (Mark Taper Forum). International:  Visible Cities (Singapore Arts Festival, Naples Theater Festival), Moonshine (Edinburgh Fringe Festival).  Film: Liberal Arts (Upcoming) Television: HMS (CW pilot), Law & Order: SVU, Ugly Betty, Louie. Training: Yale, CalArts.

David Cale  (Friar) is the writer/performer of the Obie Award winning solo show  Lillian(Playwrights Horizons, The Goodman Theatre, Chicago), The History of Kisses (The Studio Theatre, Washington D.C., Kansas City Rep), A Likely Story (The New Group), Deep in a Dream of You (The Public Theater, Goodman, Bessie Award for Outstanding Creative Achievement), Smooch Music (The Kitchen, Goodman), The Redthroats (Second Stage, P.S. 122, Goodman, Mark Taper Forum, Taper Too, L.A., Bessie Award for Outstanding Creative Achievement) and Palomino (CTG’s Kirk Douglas Theatre, Culver City, K.C. Rep), for which he received the 2011 Bay Area Theatre Critics Circle Award for Best Solo Performance. He wrote the book, lyrics, co-composed the music for, and played Floyd in the musical Floyd and Clea Under the Western Sky (Playwrights Horizons, Goodman, Hartford Stage, Outer Critics Circle Nomination).  He wrote and co-performed the duet show  Betwixt (The New Group) and in collaboration with Dael Orlandersmith, The Blue Album (Long Wharf Theatre). He has written lyrics for songs including Imitation of a Kiss, which has been sung by Elvis Costello, Deborah Harry, Jimmy Scott and The Jazz Passengers. He wrote and narrated the text for the dance Chickens, performed by Mikhail Baryshnikov’s White Oak Dance Project.  He appeared on Broadway in  The Threepenny Opera  (Roundabout), and Off-Broadway in plays including Mouth to Mouth, Two Thousand Years (The New Group), and most recently The Total Bent (The Public Theater). His film credits include Two Lovers, The Slaughter Rule, Pollock and Radio Days.  David is the recipient of two NYFA Fellowships and a Solo Performance Fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts.

Matt Citron (Mercutio). Credits include On the Line (Canal Park Playhouse), Hell House (St. Ann’s Warehouse),  Feed Forward (Dance Theatre Workshop),  Mental Missiles (The Culture Project), Happy Sauce (NY Fringe).  Regional: Arcadia and A Winter’s Tale (Chautauqua Theater Company), Much Ado About Nothing and  A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Commonwealth Shakespeare Company). As composer: The Henry Box Brown Play by Tony Kushner, Music co-composed with Mark Wing-Davey (NYU Graduate Acting).  As music director: Caravan Man By Tommy Smith and Gabriel Kahane and Western Country By Noah Haidle (Both at Williamstown). Education: M.F.A. NYU Graduate Acting. www.mattcitron.com

Will Cohn  (Benvolio). Shakespeare on the Sound:  Othello.  Other Shakespeare:  Twelfth Night, (Oxford University),  Richard III (Purchase College),  Comedy of Errors (Purchase College),  TheTempest (Curtain Call). Fairfield County: Come Back to the Five & Dime Jimmy Dean, Jimmy Dean(Darien Arts Center), The Shadow Box (Wilton Playshop), The Diary of Anne Frank (Curtain Call), Ice Glen (Westport Community Theatre),  Rope (EastBound Theatre).  New York: Readings at Abingdon, Theatre for the New City, and World Wide Plays Festival. Film/TV:  Personal Justice(Discovery Investigation), various student films and videos.  Training: British American Drama Academy (U.K.), Stella Adler, HB Studios, Purchase College Shakespeare Youth.

William Jackson Harper (Romeo). Much Ado About Nothing (Shakespeare on the Sound), The Total Bent, Titus Andronicus, Measure for Measure (The Public Theater), A Cool Dip in the Barren Saharan Crick  (Playwrights Horizons),  Ruined  (Manhattan Theatre Club), Queens Boulevard, Paradise Park (Signature Theatre Company), Microcrisis, The Children of Vonderly (Ma-Yi TheatreCompany),  Massacre (sing to your children)  (Rattlestick Playwrights Theatre), The Inexplicable Redemption of Agent G (Vampire Cowboys). Film and TV: All Good Things, “Law & Order,” “Law & Order: CI,” “The Electric Company,” “30 Rock.”

Rachael Holmes  (Lady Capulet/Tybalt). Stage: Credits include Sophie in  Ruined (dir. Charles Randolph-Wright) and Lily in The Book Club Play (dir. Molly Smith) at Arena Stage, Queen Isabel in Richard II (dir. Michael Kahn), Princess Katherine in Henry V (dir. David Muse) and Portia in Julius Caesar (dir. David Paul) at Shakespeare Theatre Company, Osha in Marcus; or The Secret of Sweetat Studio Theatre (dir. Timothy Douglas), Sophie/Salima/Josephine swing in Ruined at Manhattan Theatre Club (dir. Kate Whoriskey),  Persephone's Cowboy: A Musical (dir. Alex Timbers), 365 Days/365 Plays at The Public (dir. Michael Greif) and at Epic Theatre Ensemble (dirs. Leigh Silverman and Hal Brooks). TV: “The Good Wife,” “Dirt,” national commercials and voice-overs.  Ms. Holmes is a master teaching artist at The New Victory Theatre and Shakespeare Theatre Company. MFA NYU on the Jacob K. Javits Fellowship.

Damian Lemar Hudson (Singer/Paris) recently played Deacon Dennis in The Total Bent at the Public Theater. Last May Damian graduated from The University of Arizona's B.F.A. Musical Theatre program. Previous credits include Flick in Violet; Mitch Mahoney in The 25th Annual Spelling Beeand The Narrator/Dead Guy in Damian's original musical High Crimes. Google High Crimes for his original music and taped performance.

Chinasa Ogbuagu (Nurse). New York: The Deepest Play Ever (The New Ohio and NY Fringe) The Overwhelming (Roundabout Theater); A Family Of Perhaps Three (Target Margin); 365/365 (The Public); Talking To Terrorists (Impact Theater Festival); Nothing But the Truth (Lincoln Center). Regional:  Ruined (OSF);  The Seven (La Jolla Playhouse);  Breath, Boom (Huntington Theatre); Venus (Olney Theater); The Story (ACTCo); Film/TV: Petunia; A Gifted Man; Nurse Jackie; Fringe; Law & Order; Law & Order: SVU; BFA Boston University.

Tony Torn (Capulet) is known for his extensive work with legendary experimental theater artists Reza Abdoh and Richard Foreman.  Shakespearian roles include Trinculo in  The Tempest (with Mandy Patinkin) at Classic Stage Company, Buckingham in Richard III at The Pelican Theater and Titus in  Ti2us, Toxic  Dreams' experimental adaptation of  Titus Andronicus. Recent stage credits include Jason Grote's  Civilization (all you can eat)  with Clubbed Thumb at HERE Arts Center, Ostrovsky's The Forest (with Dianne Wiest) at Classic Stage Company, John Guare's Six Degrees Of Separation  at The Old Globe in San Diego, and David Henry Hwang's  Yellowface at The Public Theater. Upcoming work includes the title role in The Passion Of Warren Buffett for Toxic Dreams in Vienna, Austria.

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Suzze June 02, 2012 at 05:18 PM
Can't wait for the performances! I am sure it will be spectacular.
louis June 03, 2012 at 12:02 AM
I always loved this one Shakespeare production. Certainly also Julius Ceasar and Macbeth top my list too, but since I have a last name which originates from the noble family of the beautiful village of Verona, I prefer Juliet and Romeo. Heck, what is the point of life without a little romance and something to believe in....
Alleyha Dannett June 03, 2012 at 05:29 AM
The Cast and the Director, Joanna Settle are all SO amazing; I honestly cannot wait for the shows in Greenwich and Rowayton! (I intend on bringing just about everyone I know to both) I just have to be sure to get there early becasue its definitely going to be PACKED!
PTCHFAN June 03, 2012 at 01:52 PM
These are not to be missed! Who can resist Romeo and Juliet under the stars. I can't think of a more perfect date.
Glenn Wolff, LCSW June 04, 2012 at 03:57 AM
This looks great! Looking forward to seeing the production.

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