Tuesday, March 31, 2009

The 2009 Ennotville Summer Season

It's finally here!

It is with great pleasure that I announce our line-up for the 2009 summer season at the Ennotville Library. This will be our 5th season in Ennotville, and we're celebrating our short history in our very old venue by celebrating the pioneers of theatre's long and exciting past. Much like the pioneers who built the Ennotville Library, the theatrical pioneers whose works we're bringing to life this summer have made possible the richness of expression and depth of meaning we see in the great plays of today.

The first show in our season is called Dulcitus. It is a farce, written by Hroswitha of Gandersheim, the world’s first known female dramatist, and one of the only suriving examples of drama from after the fall of classical Rome and before the start of the Renaissance - the period of time often referred to as "The Dark Ages."
The play runs June 11th—June 27th.

Next up we have a very fanciful play entitled The Birth of Merlin. It's a comedy by William Rowley, though it's very likely that he had a collaborator (as was the case with many of his other plays, like The Changeling, which he wrote with Thomas Middleton). Some early editions of the play list the collaborator as William Shakespeare, though few scholars believe Shakespeare had a hand in the writing, and his name was likely affixed simply to make the play simply to make it more popular. However, this broad, comical story about Merlin being born full-grown encompasses much Arthurian legend, and gives us a glimpse of what "the other guys" were writing about from a time period where we are so often blinded by the the plays of Shakespeare alone. The show opens July 2nd and runs to July 18th.

Next up we're bringing to you a show entitled Commedia! This will be my personal contribution to the season. I'm rewriting a scenario from the Commedia D'ell Arte - the hilarious improv-based form of Italian popular entertainment that flourished throughout the 17th and 18th centuries. These plays featured broad, "stock" characters and situations based around mistaken identities and blind sexual desires. It is out of the Commedia D'ell Arte that the plot lines of many popular comedies first emerged, and it is the birthplace of many famous TV sit-com characters, from Al Bundy to Rosanne to the entire cast of Seinfeld. Commedia! plays July 23rd—August 8th.

We close out our summer season with a salute to the popular entertainment of the 19th and early 20th centuries - Vaudeville. This show will feature music, dancing and lots of laughs, as we resurrect some of the great acts and routines of an earlier time. It's much like any other variety show that could have been presented at the Library in its younger days. Vaudeville opens August 13th and runs to August 29th.

Of course, all shows , dates and venues subject to change, but that's what we've got lined up so far (we may be able to add another week in September, depending on when the kids go back to school).

I hope you enjoy our Ennotville summer season, but I understand that not everyone gets as excited as I do about plays from the rich history of the theatre. While we'll strive to make sure all these plays are as open and accessible to everyone as possible, if they just aren't your cup of tea then that's okay, because we have some contemporary theatre for you this summer as well. Tune in tomorrow for our announcement of the three plays that will form our 2009 Belwood Summer Season!

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