The Washington, D.C.–based Taffety Punk Theatre Company is promising to continue pushing the boundaries of Shakespeare during its 2013–2014 season while presenting two plays about boundary-pushing writers.
The company's annual Riot Grrrls production, featuring an all-female cast, will be William Shakespeare's Titus Andronicus Sept. 28–Oct. 26. The Riot Grrrls have previously taken on Romeo and Juliet, Measure for Measure, Julius Caesar, and Much Ado About Nothing.
Also in the Shakespeare genre, the company has scheduled a staging next summer of Enter Ophelia, Distracted, part of the Taffety Punk Generator Project. The program gives company members the opportunity to develop and workshop new works. In this presentation, Kimberly Gilbert, through Shakespeare's Hamlet text, choreography, and a sonic landscape, explores Ophelia's descent into madness. Gilbert played Feste aka Death in this year's Taffety Punk production of Twelfth Night, and Lucrece in the company's Rape of Lucrece.
In May, Taffety Punk will present in repertory Bloody Poetry by Howard Brenton and Charm by Kathleen Cahill. Brenton's play portrays the English poets Percy Shelley and Lord Byron as they meet on the shores of Lake Geneva accompanied by the former's lover, Mary Shelley, and her half sister, Claire Clairmont, Byron's mistress. Charm explores the life of Margaret Fuller, a mid-19th century American journalist.
Taffety Punk will be devoting Monday nights to a series of staged readings in collaboration with the Chicago-based Shanghai Low Theatricals. The series of literary adaptations "explores the history of pop culture (a motif of Shanghai Low's work) and will try to reinvent the staged reading in the process," says a press release.
The season ends later in the summer with Taffety Punk's annual Bootleg Shakespeare, in which actors rehearse and present to the public a Shakespeare play in one day. The title has not yet been chosen.
All productions will be at the Capitol Hill Arts Workshop, 545 7th Street SE, Washington DC 20003, except the Bootleg Shakespeare, which will be hosted by the Folger Theatre.
Admission to all shows is just $15 except for Bootleg Shakespeare, which is free. Tickets for Titus Andronicus are on sale at tix.taffetypunk.com or by calling 800-838-3006.
September 9, 2013