Find Events Find Events
Choose date range
Free events
Select Series
Select a Genre(s)
Filters
Search by Keyword
Filters
Select Series
Select a Genre(s)
Free events

Author: Sabine Kortals

Review: Kent, Macon buoy Colorado Shakespeare Festival production of ‘Othello’

The face of the Colorado Shakespeare Festival is so blasé.

(Above: photo by Jennifer Koskinen)

Sure, the guy featured on T-shirts, stanchions and inside of thousands of playbills is the whole reason people show up, but the tunic, pointed beard and receding hairline are so 1590s.

Instead of the same ol’, played out portrait, the symbolic countenance would be much better suited wearing a mop of sun-pecked hair and the irrepressible shadow of 5 o’clock whiskers. And, of course, wield the dictatorial punch of one of Colorado’s most magisterial manipulators.

That final epithet is exactly what Geoffrey Kent has embodied during his 13 seasons and dozens of productions with the CSF, and it is precisely the handle he deserves for his portrayal of Iago in this year’s production of Othello at the Mary Rippon Outdoor Theatre in Boulder.
For the second straight year, Kent bubbled to the front of the audience’s collective conscience by steering attention away from a title character penned by the Bard a handful of centuries ago. Last year he shined as Hotspur in Henry IV Part Iand this time around he embodies the ultimate Shakespearean malefactor made up of equal parts Benedict Arnold, Darth Vader and Mean Girls’ Cady Heron: Iago.
As a quick refresher, he’s the one who manages to convince the title character, who’s also a Moorish general, that his new wife, Desdemona (Laura Baranik), has been stepping out on him with Lieutenant Cassio (Peter Simon Hilton). All based on a well-placed purple napkin, a lot of peeved finger pointing, sobbing and stabbing ensues, naturally. It’s all coming rushing back to you now, right? Wonderful.
But as delightfully unsettling as it is to watch Kent play the expert puppeteer, he by no means hogs all of the outdoor spotlight from the show’s leading man. Emmy award-winner Peter Macon renders a ferocious Othello teeming with the passion, rage and affability required of any proper tragic hero. His brio swells consistently from start to finish, ultimately unleashing a slew of exceptional emotional explosions in the second act. The specific tirade featuring, “farewell the tranquil mind,” makes for a particularly potent dose of showmanship that allows the audience to truly embrace his tortured reasoning.
Throughout the roughly three-hour show, first-time CSF director Lisa Wolpe clearly allows both Macon and Kent to rightfully take charge of the production’s energy levels, to which the two leaders respond with gusto, giving the audience little reason to complain. The villain and hero appropriately carry the brunt of the load in terms of both style and delivery…read Quincy Snowden’s full review of “Othello” in the Aurora Sentinel.

Upcoming CSF Events View all events

Love's Labour's Lost

Loading
Jun 8-Aug 12, 2018

Love's Labour's Lost

By William Shakespeare
Starting at $20

Start your summer with a frothy, funny celebration of love and learning. In the bucolic Kingdom of Navarre, four attractive young men make a pact to s...

Richard III

Loading
Jun 22-Aug 11, 2018

Richard III

By William Shakespeare
Starting at $20

The Bard’s most murderous, malicious and mesmerizing king comes to the CSF indoor stage for the first time. Richard, Edward IV’s deformed ...

Cyrano de Bergerac

Loading
Jul 6-Aug 11, 2018

Cyrano de Bergerac

By Edmond Rostand
Starting at $20

The inspiration behind the hit film “Roxanne,” Edmond Rostand’s timeless romantic comedy has it all: passion, panache and thrilling ...

You Can't Take It With You

Loading
Jul 20-Aug 12, 2018

You Can't Take It With You

By Moss Hart and George S. Kaufman
Starting at $20

Seize the rare opportunity to see a hit screwball comedy on the professional stage. When Alice brings her boyfriend’s traditional, straight-lace...

Edward III

Loading
Aug 5, 2018

Edward III

By William Shakespeare and Thomas Kyd
Starting at $20

CSF’s beloved ‘Original Practices’ tradition continues with the gripping history play that’s been mired in mystery for hundred...