It is late in the 15th century. The Italian city states are in turmoil. The king of Naples, Alonso, and his court are returning from the wedding of his daughter to an Algerian prince in Africa, when their ship crashes on an island in the Mediterranean Sea. Accompanying the king is his son Ferdinand, the king’s brother Sebastian, the present Duke of Milan Antonio, and various courtiers and sailors. On the island is Prospero, the former Duke of Milan, who has caused the shipwreck by his magical arts, and who 13 years earlier had been set adrift with his infant daughter Miranda by King Alonso and Antonio. Will Prospero exact revenge upon those who ruined his life?
“The Tempest” is a complex play full of mystery, passion, symbolism, humor, magic, and drama. All characters are fully realized and integral to the plot. In addition to the named roles, there will be a number of parts for island spirits who speak, taunt, sing, torment, and perform the “play within the play”; my hope is to incorporate middle school and high school students into these roles, but not necessarily to the exclusion of adults.
As part of the production, there will be two weekends of Shakespeare play camp prior to auditions. These are optional. It will be a fun way to learn about performing The Bard’s work, or just a chance to goof around if you already have Shakespearean experience.
Auditioners are advised to read the play (maybe even more than once). There are many good versions available that include notes, interpretations and analyses. Once the show is cast, it will be a mad wonderful dash forward with no looking back.
“How beauteous mankind is! O brave new world, that has such people in’t!”
The Tempest is being directed by Cheri Gagnon.