Author: Pranathi Durgempudi

Colorado Shakespeare Festival announces 2020 season, featuring modern remixes of classic tales

The Colorado Shakespeare Festival (CSF) is releasing the lineup for its 2020 season, including larger than life remixes of classics, playing June 5 to Aug. 9. The 2020 season features Shakespearean works “A Midsummer Night’s Dream,” “All’s Well That Ends Well,” “Coriolanus” and “Pericles,” as well as Mary Zimmerman’s adaptation of Homer’s “The Odyssey.”

The summer season begins with an edgy twist on “A Midsummer Night’s Dream.” Directed by Carolyn Howarth and opening in the Mary Rippon Theatre on June 6, the popular comedy will fuse familiar characters and themes with elements of glam punk rock.

“For ‘Midsummer’ it’s really important that we take a really new, fresh, wild, crazy, funky approach—and make it a party as well,” Producing Artistic Director Tim Orr said. “Carolyn understands that and understands that the value and beauty of the story is the lovers.”

On June 20, Shakespeare’s “All’s Well That Ends Well” will open indoors in the University Theatre. Directed by CSF Managing Director Wendy Franz, this coming-of-age tale explores issues of appearances, class and gender set against the stylized backdrop of 1950s France.

“I think it’s really about both of them finding their way—and finding their way to each other as they find themselves,” Franz said of the comedy’s two young lovers. “It’s about that journey from grief and the ignorance of youth to maturity and the joy that it brings.”

The Mary Zimmerman adaptation of Homer’s classic poem “The Odyssey” joins the outdoor lineup starting July 5. As hero Odysseus makes the trek home to his kingdom after the fall of Troy, he encounters a slew of obstacles, including witches, mythical beasts and nosy gods. Orr will direct.

“I am enthralled by this adaption by Mary Zimmerman. It is so theatrical, so moving and funny. It shows us this ancient adventure that is still exciting, and how live theatre can be so powerful bringing it to life,” said Orr.

Opening indoors in the University Theatre on July 18, CSF’s main season will be completed with one of Shakespeare’s ancient Roman war plays, directed by Anthony Powell. “Coriolanus” grapples with timely themes of democracy and political power. The play was last performed at CSF in 1995.

“It’s a wild script,” said Powell. “It’s part political satire, part portrait of a man so deeply broken and conflicted that he can no longer navigate his way through normal society.”

Finally, Kevin Rich will direct the performance of CSF’s Original Practices production of Shakespeare’s “Pericles” on Aug. 2. Featuring a fugitive, shipwrecked prince, this annual one-night-only event showcases a play as it might have been originally performed in the Bard’s time.

The 2020 season begins Friday, June 5, and runs through Sunday, Aug. 9. Season tickets are available beginning Oct. 28, over the phone at 303-492-8008 and weekdays from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the CU Presents Box Office. Single tickets will be available beginning Dec. 2.

Colorado Shakespeare Festival 2020 season

A Midsummer Night’s Dream
By William Shakespeare
Directed by Carolyn Howarth
June 5-Aug. 9, 2020, Mary Rippon Outdoor Theatre

Kick off the season with a summer-long party! In this glam run of Shakespeare’s electric comedy, the paths of four young lovers, some feuding fairies, a mischievous sprite and a troupe of bumbling actors collide. Join them in the forest as enchanting and peculiar schemes unfold across one unforgettable midsummer night.

All’s Well That Ends Well
By William Shakespeare
Directed by Wendy Franz
June 19-Aug. 8, 2020, University Theatre (indoors)

A smart and sexy coming-of-age romp set in elegant 1950s France, “All’s Well That Ends Well” introduces audiences to Helen and Bertram—one, a brilliant but poor physician’s daughter, the other, a wealthy, roguish soldier—as they grow up and grow into themselves in order to find love.

The Odyssey
By Homer, adapted by Mary Zimmerman
Adapted from the translation of “The Odyssey” by Robert Fitzgerald
Directed by Tim Orr
July 3-Aug.8, 2020, Mary Rippon Outdoor Theatre

In Mary Zimmerman’s sweeping adaptation of Homer’s classic adventure, our hero Odysseus undergoes an epic journey to return to his own kingdom after the fall of Troy. He’ll have to overcome witches, mythological beasts and the gods themselves if he ever hopes to see his wife and son again.

By William Shakespeare
Directed by Anthony Powell
July 17-Aug. 9, 2020, University Theatre (indoors)

Follow the tumultuous career of one of ancient Rome’s super soldiers in Shakespeare’s white-hot war play. An enduring, resonant tale, “Coriolanus” raises questions about the power of common people, the efficacy of leaders who always speak their mind and the strength of a democracy run by polarizing political schemes.

By William Shakespeare
Directed by Kevin Rich
Aug. 2, 2020, Mary Rippon Outdoor Theatre

Summer’s hottest ticket is the Colorado Shakespeare Festival’s Original Practices performance.
This summer, revisit “Pericles,” the story of a shipwrecked prince on the run after discovering a king’s terrible secret. CSF’s annual tradition of presenting plays as they were originally performed sells out months in advance—be sure to reserve your ticket right away!