The Utah Shakespeare Festival started its 53rd season this week which runs through October 18. I am an SUU alumnus and really enjoyed the campus and theater while we lived in Cedar City. (I wrote several articles for the University Journal about the plays, directors and festival as a student!) I am excited to go to the Utah Shakespeare Festival this season!
The Shakespeare festival is set up as a repertory theater festival which means the festival opens six plays in six days and rotate them during the summer. This way you can see all six plays in just three days. However, the plays don’t always play on the same day of the week, so check the calendar for dates and times.
8 Shows at the 2014 Utah Shakespeare Festival:
• Henry IV Part One by William Shakespeare in the Adams Shakespearean Theatre, June 23 to August 30
The heir to his Henry IV’s throne, Prince Hal, ignores the gathering storm clouds as the civil war still smolders and instead parties wildly with his friends, including the hilarious rogue, Sir John Falstaff. Ultimately, the prince must choose between the revelry of his bar buddies and the bravery of a soldier and king. His choice will shape the future of a nation.
• Measure for Measure by William Shakespeare in the Adams Shakespearean Theatre, June 23 to August 30
In this seldom-produced but daring “dark comedy,” William Shakespeare tests integrity and decency to their limits. Can goodness survive in a corrupt society? Can evil be meted out, with justice and mercy? Can chaste, innocent Isabella endure the foul machinations of those around her?
• The Comedy of Errors by William Shakespeare in the Adams Shakespearean Theatre, June 23 to August 30
The Comedy of Errors is about, not one, but two sets of bewildered twins who are in the same small town but who don’t know about each other. Every dusty road they turn down looks just like the last one, and every prospector and saloon girl seems to know more about them than they know about themselves. The more they try to unravel the lunatic events swirling around them, the more farcical their lives become. It’s double the laughter with two sets of twins and twice the fun when Shakespeare’s hysterical comedy is re-imagined in the California gold rush of 1849.
• Sense and Sensibility by Joseph Hanreddy and J. R. Sullivan in the Randall L. Jones Theatre, June 23 to August 30
Yes, there are plays not written by William Shakespeare! This world-premiere adaptation of Jane Austen’s romantic novel was commissioned especially for Utah Shakespeare Festival audiences. It tells the touching and comic story of the Dashwood sisters who are both looking for true love, but in very different ways. Elinor is all about using her rational head, while Marianne invariably follows her heart. Full of repressed passion and soaring emotions, both their stories have the right mix of Austen’s humor, romance, and happy endings.
• Into the Woods by Stephen Sondheim in the Randall L. Jones Theatre, June 23 to August 30
Who wants a fairy tale? An uncertain Cinderella. A bloodthirsty Little Red Ridinghood. A wicked witch—who sings and dances? In this modern musical, happiness-ever-after is not always what it seems: Actions have consequences, charming princes have flaws, and, well, killing a giant can make the giant’s wife very angry.
• Twelfth Night by William Shakespeare in the Randall L. Jones Theatre, June 23 to October 18
This play is all about love and love, but the hilarious cast of characters make you laugh. Orsino loves Olivia, but she won’t give him the time of day. Olivia loves Viola, whom she thinks is a boy (Uh oh!). Viola loves Orsino, but doesn’t know she’s a girl (Uh oh again!) Malvolio loves being in love. Andrew, Toby Belch, and Maria love life to its fullest. It’s all fun confusion, but in the end, everyone finds love when they least expect it.
• Sherlock Holmes: The Final Adventure by Steven Dietz in the Randall L. Jones Theatre, September 20 to October 18
This is the play I am looking forward to the most! Could this be Sherlock Holmes’ final case? Moriarty thinks so. And, despite the best efforts of Holmes and Dr. Watson, Moriarty may just be right.
• Boeing-Boeing by Marc Camoletti in the Randall L. Jones Theatre, September 20 to October 18
What happens when a playboy bachelor is engaged to three flight attendants? He schedules to see them when their flights come it, but his supersonic lifestyle goes into a tailspin when flight schedules change and all three women arrive at his apartment on the same evening. It is a bumpy, but hilarious ride in this farce. There are plenty of flirtatious hijinks, slamming doors, and utter confusion.
Where is the Utah Shakespeare Festival?
The world-class, Tony Award-winning theatre, with free seminars and pre-play entertainment occurs with the amazing backdrop of southern Utah. Cedar City is Festival City and the Utah Shakespeare Festival helped to start that! Southern Utah University is the home of the Shakespeare Festival and continues to be an excellent host!
How do I get a deal on tickets for the Shakespeare Festival?
Tickets can be purchased online, but there are some great discounts!
Festival Family Days
This year’s family friendly matinée is The Comedy of Errors. For a limited time tickets are $15 for select performances: July 9, 12, 15, 18, 23, 26 and 30 and August 2, 8, 14, 19, 22 and 30. Discounted tickets must be purchased by July 15. Use the coupon code FAMILY when purchasing tickets online at www.bard.org.
Student Access Card
The Student Access Cards are $35 and allow one student unlimited access to Festival productions from August 18 through October of this year. Students must present their student ID and another form of ID to buy the Student Access Card at the Festival Ticket Office. To redeem the card for tickets, students must show their card and a matching student ID on the day of the show. Tickets are non-transferable.
The Festival makes various discounts available for seniors, AAA members, schools, and groups. For information, call the ticket office because these discounts are not online!
Where do I park when attending the Shakespearean Festival?
Free parking is available near all the Festival theatres. Festival guests can park free in Southern Utah University parking lots.
Best Part of the Utah Shakespeare Festival
My very favorite part is actually free – the Green Show! The Greenshow is the perfect way to spend 40 minutes. Each summer evening on the green surrounding the Adams Theatre, there is spirited song and dance. It’s meant as a pre-show, but when we were poor college students, it was fun to walk across campus and stop just for the Greenshow! So lovely and fun.
The Greenshow runs each Monday to Saturday at 7:10 p.m. from June 23 to August 30
Planning a Trip
If you aren’t a Cedar City resident, you will definitely not be disappointed with a trip to Cedar City. You can check out my great travel deals. Cedar City is beautiful and so is Southern Utah University! Have fun!!