Shakespeare for Everyone

 


by William Shakespeare• directed by Renée Bucciarelli
assisted by Shoshona Willow Currier
• October 28,  2001
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Legend says that Queen Elizabeth wished to see Falstaff in love, and this predominantly prose comedy, The Merry Wives of Windsor (1597-98), was the result.  It is also said that it was written in a hurry, possibly a fortnight, and was performed for a Garter celebration at Windsor in 1597.  Never a favorite with academic critics, it usually is a hit with a theatre-goers.

The play is often acted in a summer setting; but many lines ("sea-coal fire," "this raw rheumatic day") indicate that it takes place in a colder period.

This representation of life in an English provincial town refers to other, older plays; the main plot closely resembles "Il Pecorone," a 1558 Italian play by Ser Giovanni Fiorentino.  The plot and the primary subplot also draw on ancient Roman comedy and medieval farce. Though the play does contain characters both above and below the middle class, as well as culturally stereotyped foreigners, ultimately everything functions to demonstrate the assimilating power of the middle class.

The first American production was in Philadelphia, in 1770; the first New York production in 1789.

 

CAST

Sir John Falstaff

Ron Sanborn*

Fenton

Frank Smith

Shallow

Bill Roulet*

Slender

Patrick J. Curley

Ford

Andrew Oswald*

Page

Joseph Small*

Sir Hugh Evans

Edwin Sean Patterson

Doctor Caius

Jon Fordham

Host

Joe Ryan

Bardolph

Roger Stude

Pistol

Eddie Boroevich

Nym

Bev Lacy

Robin

Hannah Ensler-Rivel

Simple

Roger Stude

Jack Rugby

Luke Eisemann

Mistress Ford

Angela Bullock*

John

Eddie Boroevich

Robert

Roger Stude

Mistress Page

Vicki Hirsch*

Anne Page

Sabrina Yocono

Mistress Quickly

Deborah Wright Houston*

*Member of Actors' Equity Association (AEA)

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