Pennsylvania Shakespeare Festival to Open Measure for Measure in Repertory with The Importance of Being Earnest

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                           July 2, 2013

Lisa Higgins, Lisa.Higgins@pashakespeare.org                 610.282.9455, ext.4

Center Valley, PA – Virtue and sin collide in Shakespeare’s provocative Measure for Measure, opening on Saturday, July 20 on the Pennsylvania Shakespeare Festival’s main stage. With previews July 18 and 19, the play runs through August 4 in repertory with the same cast performing in The Importance of Being Earnest.

Directed by Fontaine Syer, Measure for Measure takes the audience to the city of Vienna, where corruption abounds. The Duke of Vienna, Vincentio, played by Greg Wood, leaves his seemingly moral deputy Angelo, played by Black Ellis, to restore the city to decency. The novice Isabella, played by Erin Partin, is forced to confront a choice between immortality and execution, with her imprisoned brother’s life hanging in the balance.

The cast includes Wayne S. Turney as the ancient lord Escalus and Brad DePlanche as the servant to Mistress Overdone, Pompey. Playing the Provost, the prison lord who carries out all of Angelo’s orders is Dan Hodge, who won the 2011 Barrymore for Outstanding Leading Actor. Suzanne O’Donnell appears as Mistress Overdone, a bawd.
Bob Phillips has designed scenery. Marla Jurglanis has designed the costumes, and PSF’s resident designer Matthew Given designed sound. Lighting has been designed by Thom Weaver. Stacy Renee Norwood serves as stage manager, with Alison Hassman as assistant stage manager. Assistant director is Ian Bedford.

Measure for Measure
By William Shakespeare
Directed by Fontaine Syer

Previews: July 18 and July 19

Opens: Saturday, July 20

Closes: Sunday, August 4

Performances: Tuesday, July 23 at 7pm; Wednesday, July 31 at 8pm; Thursday, July 18 & 25 at 8pm; Friday, July 19 & August 2 at 8 pm; Saturday, July 20 & 27 at 8pm & August 3 at 2 pm; Sunday, July 21 at 7:30pm & August 4 at 2pm.  

Tickets: $25-55. Discounts for students, seniors, subscribers and groups.

Meet the actors: Q&A after all Thursday performances, except previews.

Box Office: 610.282.WILL [9455] Order online at: www.pashakespeare.org.
The Festival's 22nd season also features The Importance of Being Earnest (July 10 – August 4) in rep with Measure for Measure, Henry VIII (July 24 – August 4), and the children's productions Beauty and the Beast (through August 3) and Shakespeare for Kids (July 24 – August 3).

The production sponsors for Measure for Measure is Amaranth Foundation. Season sponsors are Dr. and Mrs. Frank J. Szarko, and associate season sponsors are Linda Lapos and Paul Wirth.

The Pennsylvania Shakespeare Festival is the Official Shakespeare Festival of the Commonwealth and a professional, not-for-profit, theatre company. An independent 501 c 3 organization, PSF receives support from DeSales University and relies on contributions from individuals, government agencies, corporations and foundations. PSF is a constituent of the Theatre Communications Group (TCG), the national organization for the American theatre, and a member of the Greater Philadelphia Cultural Alliance, Lehigh Valley Arts Council and the Shakespeare Theatre Association.

PRINCIPAL BIOGRAPHIES
IAN BEDFORD, Assistant Director. 8th season with PSF: Henry V, A Midsummer Night's Dream, Macbeth, The Comedy of Errors, The Two Noble Kinsmen, King John, Othello, As You Like It, and Henry IV, Part I. Alabama Shakespeare festival: title role in Macbeth and appeared in The God of Carnage and To Kill A Mockingbird. Other recent regional credits: Of Mice and Men (People’s Light), Taming of the Shrew (Chicago Shakespeare), Superior Donuts (Arden Theater), School of Night (Mark Taper Forum), The Beaux Stratagem and Richard III (Shakespeare Theatre), the title roles in Richard III (Lake Tahoe Shakespeare) and Macbeth (Orlando Shakespeare). TV: recurring on Law & Order: SVU and, most recently, Nurse Jackie.

BRAD DEPLANCHE, Pompey. PSF roles: Trinculo - The Tempest, Pseudolus–Forum, Irma Vep, and Passepartout–80 Days. Recent: Gary in I Hate Hamlet (Arts Center Coastal Carolina), Manny in Aladdin (People's Light and Theatre Company) and Complete Works of William Shakespeare (Orlando Shakespeare Theater). NYC: China; The Whole Enchilada (NY Fringe), Gameshow! (Dodger Theatricals), and Cloud Nine (Classic Stage Company). Regional Theatre: Actors Theatre of Louisville, American Conservatory Theater, South Coast Repertory, Syracuse Stage, Utah Shakespearean Festival. TV: Psychic Detectives (Tru TV).

BLAKE ELLIS, Angelo. Previous: The Shakespeare Theatre Co. (Othello, Comedy of Errors, The Persians, Love's Labour's Lost), The Royal Shakespeare Co. (Love's Labour's Lost), California Shakespeare Theatre (Richard III, King of Shadows), Berkeley Repertory Theatre (The Lieutenant of Inishmore, The Laramie Project: 10 Years Later), San Jose Repertory Theatre (The Dresser, As You Like It) and A Noise Within (The Beaux' Stratagem).

MATTHEW GIVEN, Resident Sound Designer and Production Manager. He has designed 40+ productions for PSF including: The Winter’s Tale, Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, King Lear, Dracula, Hamlet (2011), Romeo & Juliet (2010), Sleeping Beauty and The Mystery of Irma Vep. Regional: The Orlando Shakespeare Theater, Theatre Exile, the Centenary Stage Company, and Arcadia University.

ALISON HASSMAN, Assistant Stage Manager. Credits: Trinity Repertory Company, McCarter Theater, West Virginia Public Theater, Plays and Players, and The Active Theater.

DAN HODGE, Provost. PSF: The Winter's Tale and King Lear. In Philadelphia, Dan has appeared with the Wilma, Walnut Street, InterAct, Theatre Exile and Delaware Theatre Co. where he won the 2011 Barrymore for Outstanding Leading Actor for Around the World in 80 Days. A cofounder of the Philadelphia Artists' Collective, he directed The Duchess of Malfi and Timon of Athens and appeared in Changes of Heart and Creditors.

MARLA JURGLANIS, Costume Designer. PSF: Comedy of Errors, Taming of the Shrew, King Lear and Othello. Marla is the Resident Costume Designer for People's Light & Theatre Company where she has designed over 70 productions. Marla's designs have also been seen at Delaware Theatre Company, The Arden Theatre Company, The Philadelphia Theatre Company, Virginia Stage Company, Alliance Theatre Company and George Street Playhouse.

STACY RENEE NORWOOD, Stage Manager. Stage managed multiple seasons at the Depot Theatre, Orlando Shakespeare Theatre and PSF; including stage managing two shows in rep for the past two seasons.

SUSANNE O'DONNELL, Mistress Overdone. PSF: Juliet (in the inaugural season), Hermia, Viola, Lady Macduff, Phoebe, Nerissa, Agnes in School for Wives and most recently Mistress Ford in The Merry Wives of Windsor. Regional: The Arden Theatre (Dancing at Lughnasa, Romeo and Juliet), The Folger Theatre (Arcadia, The Comedy of Errors) and 1812 Productions (Boston Marriage). Recent Orlando Shakespeare Theatre credits: Emilia in Othello, Mrs. Henry Dashwood in Sense and Sensibility and Annette in God of Carnage.

ERIN PARTIN, Isabella. PSF: Perdita in The Winter's Tale in 2007. Others: Shakespeare Theatre Company DC, Shakespeare Theater of NJ, Milwaukee Repertory Theatre and The Resident Ensemble Players DE. Most recently was Ophelia in Hamlet. Other favorites include Clarice in The Liar, Roxane in Cyrano de Bergerac, Stella in A Streetcar Named Desire, Hermia in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Raina in Arms and the Man, Agnes in School for Wives, and Maria in Twelfth Night.

BOB PHILLIPS, Scenic Designer. Designed 40+ productions for PSF over the past 19 years: including The Tempest (2012), The Winter's Tale, Around the World in 80 Days, School for Wives and Sleuth. Bob is Resident Designer for Orlando Shakespeare Theatre and Centenary Stage Company. He designs often for Florida Studio Theatre, Arts Center of Coastal Carolina, Alpine Theatre Project, 1812 Company and the Arden Theatre. TV designs include Another World, Search for Tomorrow, Encyclopedia, and Sesame Street where he is currently Production Designer. Bob has received the Villager, Madison, Outer Critics Circle and Lillie Stoates awards for his stage designs, and six Emmys for his television work.

FONTAINE SYER, Director. Served as Assistant Director at the Arena Stage to Alan Schneider and Zelda Fichandler on the 1973 tour to the then Soviet Union. Previous: Oregon Shakespeare Festival, Utah Shakespeare Festival, Pennsylvania Shakespeare Festival, the Alliance Theatre (Atlanta), the Missouri Repertory Theatre (now Kansas City Rep), the Repertory Theatre of St. Louis, Theatre Project company (St. Louis), Delaware Theatre Company, and Indiana Repertory Theatre, among others.

WAYNE S. TURNEY, Escalus. Professor on the Theatre faculty at DeSales, where he recently directed his own adaptation of Dickens' A Tale of Two Cities. PSF: Moliere’s The Imaginary Invalid, Gonzalo in Tempest. Theatre works: Great Lakes Theatre Festival, Actors’ Summit, the Cleveland Play House, Actor’s Theatre of Louisville and many others.

THOM WEAVER, Lighting Designer. PSF: A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Complete Works. Regional: Wilma, Arden, Azuka, People’s Light, Walnut, Theatre Exile, Curtis Opera, and others. Some other credits: Teller’s Play Dead in Las Vegas and NYC, Children’s Theatre Company, Shakespeare Theatre, Berkshire Opera, Spoleto Festival USA, City Theatre, Pittsburgh Public Theatre, Yale Rep and others. Awards: 2 Barrymores and 14 nominations, 2-time City Paper’s Best Lighting Design, 3-time Helen Hayes Nominee, and 2007 AUDELCO Award for King Hedley II, Signature Theatre.

GREG WOOD, Vincentio. 19th season at PSF. Roles include: Prospero in The Tempest, King John in King John, Cyrano in Cyrano de Bergerac, Leontes in The Winter's Tale, Antony in Antony Cleopatra, Hamlet/Claudius in Hamlet and Richard III. Other recent credits: Polixenes in The Winter's Tale for People's Light & Theatre Co., and Alan in God of Carnage at the Walnut St. Theatre. Film and TV credits: The Discoverers, The Sixth Sense, Signs, The Happening, The Answer Man, Bereavement, Bottleworld, Killing Emmett Young, A Gentlemen's Game, Law & Order, Ed, Hack, and Homicide.