Bard on the Beach Shakespeare Festival will launch its 24th season next month with the emotional, romantic comedy Twelfth Night. Dennis Garnhum (Artistic Director, Theatre Calgary) will direct this production joining his first season with Bard on the Beach.
Spirits are lifted, hearts are mended, and love is sought and won at the What You Will Hotel and Spa. It’s 1913 and in the pampered world of a fine European spa, everyone is falling in love with someone who is not exactly who they seem.
Feste, the lobby lounge singer, entertains, Toby Belch and Andrew Aguecheek create mischief and Malvolio, the annoyingly pretentious hotel manager, threatens to spoil all the fun. Can young Viola ultimately find renewal and true love on the grounds of Olivia’s sumptuous hotel?
Shipwrecked off the coast of Ilyria with the Sea Captain (Duncan Fraser), Viola (Rachel Cairns) is convinced her twin brother has drowned. Uncertain what to do, she disguises herself as the page Cesario, sets off for Ilyria, and offers her services to the Duke Orsino (Todd Thomson), only to fall in love with him.
Orsino, however, is in love with the beautiful Countess Olivia (Jennifer Lines) and sends Cesario to woo her on his behalf while he stays with his attendants, Valentine (Andrew McNee) and Curio (Robert Olguin). Olivia, who is attended by Fabianna (Barbara Pollard), in turn becomes smitten with the lovely ‘boy’ after he comes to woo her with his poetic prose. Olivia’s kinsman, Sir Toby Belch (Bill Dow), encourages Sir Andrew Aguecheek (Richard Newman) to continue his suit for the Countess, as Aguecheek’s wealth supports Sir Toby’s carousing with Olivia’s Fool, Feste (Jonathon Young).
When Olivia’s steward, Malvolio (Allan Zinyk), threatens to have them all sent away, Maria (Naomi Wright), Olivia’s maid, plots Malvolio’s downfall using a phony love letter to him from Olivia. Meanwhile, Viola’s twin brother Sebastian (Daniel Doheny), has been saved by a mariner named Antonio (Craig Erickson) and sets off for Ilyria to see Duke Orsino. After a series of mistaken-identity mishaps, twin sister and brother finally come face to face, revealing Cesario’s true identity and the numerous cases of misplaced affection.
In other words, story lines and twists aplenty make for a comedic romp in Vancouver’s Vanier Park.
Set designer Pam Johnson has transformed the BMO Mainstage into the understated and opulent What You Will Hotel and Spa. Costume designer Nancy Bryant will add to the elegance of the early 1910’s with her pieces. A charming piano lounge will set the mood for sound designer Jeremy Spencer.
Bard on the Beach Presents Twelfth Night
Previews: June 12, 16, 18, 19, 21, 23, 25; opens June 26
Dates: June 12 to September 14, Tuesdays through Sundays; BMO Mainstage in Vanier Park
Bard-B-Q & Fireworks evenings: July 27, 31, and August 3, 6 pm
Celebrating Red & White wine event: between shows on August 17
Tickets: $43 (evenings) and $25 to $30 (previews, matinees, and long weekend evenings) with a $25 Youth Rate (6-25 years, all performances). All prices include services fees and taxes.
Early bird pricing in effect: $40 for a regular adult ticket when purchased by May 31.
For performance schedules and tickets, phone 604.739.0559 (toll free 1.877.739.0559) or visit the Bard website.