Shakespeare Santa Cruz (SSC) Artistic Director Marco Barricelli announced this week the company’s 2012 summer season, including the premiere of a new play commissioned by SSC. The commissioned work, an adaptation by Scott Wentworth of Alexandre Dumas’ The Man in the Iron Mask, will join Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night and Henry IV, Part Two, along with Machiavelli’s The Mandrake in the summer season, running July 24–Aug. 26.
As part of the 2012 season announcement, University of California–Santa Cruz Arts Division Dean David Yager announced his university’s deepened commitment to SSC. “We have just celebrated the successful 30-year anniversary of Shakespeare Santa Cruz, and the University has dramatically upgraded its long-term support for SSC which, I believe, demonstrates our shared commitment to the future of the program,” Yager said in an SSC press release. “I am extremely excited about the upcoming season, and I look forward to new collaborations between SSC and the Theater Arts Department for the benefit of our students, faculty, and the community.”
SSC’s summer season will open with Twelfth Night in the indoor Mainstage Theater. Previously produced by SSC in 1986, 1996, and 2005, this production will be Barricelli's SSC directing debut. “I think the intimacy of the Mainstage Theatre will give our audience a new appreciation for this unique piece,” he said in the SSC release.
Opening in the Festival Glen will be the world premiere of The Man in the Iron Mask, commissioned by SSC as the sequel to 2011’s highly successful production of The Three Musketeers. “I am truly excited about this news and proud to continue the SSC tradition of creating new work that other theater companies will be able to add to their repertoire,” Barricelli was quoted in the SSC release. “It’s another way in which SSC is both serving the local community, as well as leaving an imprint on the regional theatre world.”
Wentworth, an SSC associate artist and a leading actor and director at the Stratford Shakespeare Festival in Ontario, adds playwright to his list of SSC credits, which include actor (2009’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream and Julius Caesar) and director (2010’s Love’s Labor’s Lost, 2011’s Henry IV, Part One). The Man in the Iron Mask will be directed by John Sipes, who previously directed the 2009 Julius Caesar at SSC, and is a faculty member at the University of Tennessee and a company member of the Clarence Brown Theatre.
Wentworth, meanwhile, will resume the director’s reigns for the Henry IV sequel, playing in repertory in the Festival Glen. This production continues the cycle of history plays begun last year with Henry IV, Part One, and concluding next year with Henry V. “I am really excited to be bringing our audience the continuation of two stories this season,” Barricelli said in the SCC release. “I think this provides the opportunity to engage on a deeper level, and come with us on a journey that lasts beyond just one evening or one summer.” This will be SSC’s first production of Henry IV, Part Two.
The annual Fringe show, featuring SSC’s acting and production interns, will round out the summer season. The 2012 Fringe show is The Mandrake by Niccolo Machiavelli, translated by Wallace Shawn, and will play the Festival Glen.
After the close of the summer season, SSC’s production of Twelfth Night will transfer to Montalvo Arts Center in Saratoga where it will play Sept. 8–16 in the 1,200-seat, outdoor Lilian Fontaine Garden Theatre. This continues a partnership with Montalvo Arts Center begun in 2011 when The Comedy of Errors transferred for an extended run.
Barricelli will host a season preview event at Bookshop Santa Cruz on Tuesday, June 5, beginning at 7:30 p.m. The event is free and open to the public.
Season tickets ($72–$130) for the 2012 summer season will go on sale March 14. Season ticket holders from 2011 enjoy a Priority Renewal Period from Feb. 14 to March 13. Single tickets ($15–$50) for the summer season go on sale May 15. Discounts are available for youth (under age 18), senior citizens, full-time students, and UCSC staff and faculty. Tickets will be sold through the UCSC ticket office at 831-459-2159, online at shakespearesantacruz.org, or in person at the Santa Cruz Civic Auditorium ticket office. Groups of 10 or more are eligible for special rates and opportunities, and can reserve tickets beginning Feb. 14 by calling the SSC group sales office at 831-459-3160.
Tickets for Twelfth Night at Montalvo Arts Center will be available beginning May 1 at the Montalvo Arts Center ticket office by calling 408-961-5858 or online at montalvoarts.org.
Founded in 1981, Shakespeare Santa Cruz is a professional repertory company in residence at the University of California, Santa Cruz. Plays are held indoors on the UCSC Theater Arts Mainstage and outdoors among the redwoods in the Sinsheimer-Stanley Festival Glen, widely regarded as one of the most beautiful settings in the nation in which to experience live theatre. Utilizing professional actors, directors, and designers from across the continent, the company has a season comprising three core programs: the summer theatre festival, the Shakespeare to Go touring program, and the annual holiday show (a collaboration with the UCSC Theater Arts Department). The company is led by artistic director Marco Barricelli and managing director Kyle Clausen.
February 2, 2012