Two of Shakespeare’s most famous works, Hamlet and Taming of the Shrew will be performed on UW-Washington County’s stage on Friday, March 30 by the Chicago based, Suitcase Shakespeare Company. Taming of the Shrew is a high paced comedy “ready to make you split your seams and cheer on this witty battle of the sexes.” Five actors present the sharp comedy, that features live music and sound effects, acrobatics, intense sword play and wild characters. Hamlet, one of Shakespeare’s pinnacle works, is brought to life through poetically simplistic staging, intense stage combat and sword play.
Suitcase Shakespeare was founded in 2008, with the ensemble coming together after-hours, while performing at the Bristol Renaissance Faire. Two of the actors, Rachel Wells and Adam McAleavey are UW-Washington County alumni. After completing her Associate degree at UW-WC, Rachel transferred to Hope College, where she earned a BA degree in Theatre. Rachel has extensive theatrical experience and has also toured as an actor/educator with the Kentucky Shakespeare Festival. Growing up in Rubicon, Adam also began his college career at UW-WC and then transferred to UW-Stevens Point, where he completed a B.A. degree in Acting. Other credits include work with Noah Ginex Puppet Company, Piccolo Theatre, Rubicon Theatre and directing the street theatre ensemble at the Bristol Renaissance Faire.
Over the years, Suitcase Shakespeare has grown, but one thing remains the same: “that we tell the story to the best of our abilities and ignite a new fire for the classics through physically demanding theatre.” Their goal is to “kindle a passionate understanding of classical language through dynamic physical exploration of Shakespeare’s works.” Following the performances, the actors will be available for a post-performance discussion with any interested audience members.
Tickets for Suitcase Shakespeare are $13 for adults, and $10 for seniors (over 62) or youth (under 18). Free parking is available. Reservations are suggested and can be made by phoning the campus at (262) 335-5208 during normal business hours (Monday through Friday from 8am to 4:30pm) or purchase at the door (while supplies last). The University is located at 400 University Drive (off Hwy. 33 West) in West Bend.