Shakespeare Debuts at BSC with Jazz-Scored ‘Much Ado’

Christopher Innvar and Gretchen Egolf (photo Kevin Sprague)

Christopher Innvar and Gretchen Egolf (photo Kevin Sprague)

(PITTSFIELD, Mass.) – With a production of Much Ado About Nothing, directed by Julianne Boyd and running from Thursday, August 8, 2013 through August 25 at the Boyd-Quinson Mainstage, William Shakespeare makes his long-awaited debut at Barrington Stage Company. (Contributors to the Rogovoy Report are eligible for free tickets to this show.)

Boyd sets this Much Ado in Messina, Sicily, in the mid-1930s. The strains of jazz and Latin rhythms fill the air as the fun-loving, confirmed bachelor Benedick (Christopher Innvar) returns home from war to be met by the smart, headstrong Beatrice (Gretchen Egolf) – always ready to do combat with a “merry war” of witty insults. Their love story is set against a darker one of young love between Claudio (Babak Tafti) and Hero (Christina Pumariega), threatened by the machinations of the malicious Don John (Mark H. Dold). At once passionate, sexy and bitingly funny, Much Ado is filled with some of the most comedic repartee ever written, and is considered a precursor to the ‘screwball’ comedy.

This Much Ado About Nothing features an original score by Andrew Gerle, who along with Shakespeare makes his BSC debut. Gerle’s theater work includes Gloryana (2012 Kleban Award, 2011 Richard Rodgers Award); Meet John Doe (Jonathan Larson Award, new cast album on Broadway Records); The Tutor (three Richard Rodgers Awards); currently working on an adaptation of The Tempest with Fantasticks lyricist Tom Jones.  Gerle is also the author of The Enraged Accompanist’s Guide to the Perfect Audition. He teaches Musical Theatre Songwriting at Yale University.

Performances of Much Ado About Nothing are Tuesday and Wednesday at 7pm, Thursday-Saturday at 8pm, Wednesday and Friday matinees at 2pm (excluding 8/9), Sunday at 5pm. Press Opening: Sunday, August 11 at 5pm. Tickets: start at $20. Preview perfromances August 8-10 tickets are $15/$20. Seniors: $39 & $34 all matinees. Youth ages 6-18, tickets $15 all performances (subject to availability).  To purchase tickets or for more information, call the Barrington Stage Box Office at 413-236-8888 or visit Barrington Stage Company. The Box Office is located at 30 Union Street, Pittsfield.


Sunday, August 11 at 3pm

Conversations With…

Robert Bell, Wells Professor of English at Williams College and author of Shakespeare’s Great Stage of Fools, and Ilona Bell, Clarke Professor of English at Williams College and author of Elizabethan Women and the Poetry of Courtship and Elizabeth I: the Voice of a Monarch. Join Robert and Ilona Bell as they go head to head and heart to heart defending Benedick and Beatrice’s tumultuous courtship. While all “Conversations with…” events are free, reservations are highly recommended. All seating is general admission. Call the Box Office at 413-236-8888.
FREE talkback with the cast following the Tuesday, August 13 performance at 7pm.
Celebrate Italy Night at Much Ado

Purchase a ticket for the Wednesday, August 14 7pm performance and enjoy a complimentary post-show Italian dessert and wine reception with the cast of Much Ado About Nothing. Plus, all patrons who attend this special performance will be entered into a drawing for prizes including gift certificates to area Italian restaurants, specialty Italian cookies and more!



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