We’re big fans of the arts of all kinds – music, visual arts, literary arts, theatre. Any chance we get to shine a spotlight on the Cincinnati art scene we definitely take – today’s spotlight is shining on Cincinnati Shakespeare Company.
This amazing company has been making Shakespeare accessible to theatre goers in the Cincinnati area in one form or another since 1993. In 2014, they “Completed the Canon”, becoming one of the first five theaters in the United States to complete Shakespeare’s canon – performing the entirety of his works!
Every year Cincy Shakes “makes history unexpected” by performing free Shakespeare in the Park at dozens of local parks and other locations, touches the lives of local students through the Project38 education initiative as well as summer camp experiences, and so much more.
Now, they’ve embarked on a new adventure – a brand new, state-of-the-art theatre on Elm St. in OTR. The new theatre will be “the finale to the Cultural Arts Corridor, anchoring Music Hall, Memorial Hall, School of Creative and Performing Arts, and Washington Park.” They’ve raised 15 MILLION dollars towards this new theatre – an amazing feat, and proof that Cincinnati loves Shakespeare!
The 2016-17 season will be the final season at the current Race Street theatre, so snag all the chances you can to visit, enjoy an amazing night of theatre, and support this fantastic theatre company who does so much for the Cincinnati arts community.
You’ve got one last chance this season to experience the magic of Cincy Shakes – with ANTONY & CLEOPATRA! This rarely-staged Shakespeare classic is the sequel to JULIUS CAESAR which just finished it’s run at Cincy Shakes. Here’s a little more about this now infamous love story:
Part two of CSC’s special theatrical event, Antony and Cleopatra is the rarely-staged epic sequel to Julius Caesar. The victors of Rome’s civil war have divided the Empire amongst themselves, and Marc Antony has traveled to exotic Egypt to take up rule over his corner of the globe. There he encounters Egypt’s mysterious monarch, the irresistibly entrancing Cleopatra. Their impassioned love affair ultimately pits their two countries against each other and will change the face of the ancient world forever.
It’s been a fantastic season, and to me this was the perfect way to end the year. Nicholas Rose was powerful as Antony, every bit as cunning and charming as you’d expect Antony to be, and the peeks at drunken madness echo Richard Burton’s performance in the classic film. I have adored Rose in every production I’ve seen him in, so it was no surprise to me that he was absolutely amazing. Chantal Jean-Pierre is a strong, fierce Cleopatra who holds her own against Antony. Sassy and witty, I loved her portrayal of Cleopatra and can’t wait to see her in future productions. Billy Chace was, of course, fantastic in the role of Enobarubus and Kyle Brumley as Caesar Octavius was absolutely amazing. He was just as smugly charming as Roddy McDowell was in the 1963 Elizabeth Taylor film – and I loved it!
I could go on for days about every single actor in this production, but the truth is – you really have to experience it for yourself. I suppose by now I shouldn’t be so amazed at the wealth of talent that takes to the stage at Cincinnati Shakespeare Company, but I still to this day walk away feeling blessed to have such a wonderful theatre company right here in Cincinnati. My oldest son, an aspiring actor himself, will be attending Cincinnati Shakespeare Company’s summer acting camp, and I couldn’t be more thrilled.
If you have the chance, please go see this production. While rowdy and a little saucy at times, it’s definitely appropriate for your older children – especially if they have already been introduced to Shakespeare’s works in language arts class. Reading Shakespeare’s works has always been a delight for me, but seeing them brought to life on a stage by a company of awe-inspiring actors is truly inspiring!
ANTONY & CLEOPATRA RUNS May 13 – June 4, 2016
Thursdays, Fridays, and Saturdays at 7:30 p.m. & Sundays at 2 p.m.
Final Saturday at 2 p.m.
Thursdays & Sundays: Adults $35, Seniors $31, Students $22
Fridays & Saturdays: Adults $39, Seniors $35, Students $26
For more information on summer camps, Project38, and other Cincy Shakes initiatives – and to find out how you can support the building of the new theatre at Elm St. in OTR – please visit their website at www.cincyshakes.com.
DISCLOSURE: I was provided with a pair of tickets for review purposes. The thoughts and opinions above are 100% my own and heartfelt. This is a truly amazing and inspiring theatre company.