STAG is rais­ing the Bard


Shepparton News - - NEWS - By Tara Whitsed

Shep­par­ton The­atre Arts Group per­form­ers will pay homage to the great Wil­liam Shake­speare, per­form­ing ex­cerpts from a se­lec­tion of his plays next month.

The Bake­house Bard: A Mid­sum­mer Night’s Mashup will see the en­tire STAG site utilised, in­clud­ing the trans­formed Bake­house Black Box ‘‘Globe’’ the­atre.

Direc­tor Gemma Marchant said she was pleased with the re­hearsal process and, two weeks out, the per­form­ers were now run­ning the show through.

‘‘All the ac­tors have worked very hard; be­cause we’ve only had a short re­hearsal pe­riod, they’ve done a lot of work out­side re­hearsals,’’ Ms Marchant said.

‘‘They’ve all risen to the chal­lenge.

‘‘Shake­speare is not easy.’’

Led by MC John Head as Puck, the cast of Bran­don Arm­strong, David Chew, Fiona Ken­nan, Se­bas­tian Mathieson, Dale Roberts, Laura Vara­po­dio and Jay­den Yosh as well as en­sem­ble mem­bers Rachel Con­nell-Short, Rae Wood and Meaghan Thomp­son, the cast fea­tures a mix of stal­wart STAG per­form­ers and new­com­ers.

Ms Marchant said au­di­ence mem­bers would be taken on a jour­ney around the STAG site as the show pro­gressed and could also en­gage in the cir­cu­lar, Globe The­atre ex­pe­ri­ence.

‘‘It can be quite a chal­lenge for an ac­tor to de­liver some­thing on a round stage,’’ she said.

‘‘Within the rov­ing el­e­ment of the show, the au­di­ences will find them­selves hid­den within a for­est, so that’s go­ing to be very in­ter­est­ing to see how we pull that off in the Bake­house com­plex.

‘‘We are at­tempt­ing to make Shake­speare ac­ces­si­ble to the wider com­mu­nity not by serv­ing up a ful­l­length play, but rather giv­ing pa­trons more bite size pieces to whet their ap­petite from an ar­ray of dif­fer­ent styles — from com­edy to tragedy and in be­tween.’’ ● Bake­house Bard will run from Fe­bru­ary 1 to 9 at The Bake­house Com­plex and Black Box The­atre, Wheeler St, Shep­par­ton. All tick­ets cost $30 with drinks avail­able at bar prices.

Re­gal show: Se­bas­tian Mathieson as King Henry from Henry V.

Call­ing the shots: MC for the Bake­house Bard John Head as Puck.

Royal touch: Dale Roberts per­forms as King Henry from Henry VI.

Cast­ing spell: Rae Wood per­forms as one of the witches from Mac­beth.

Im­pres­sive: Laura Vara­po­dio per­forms as Vi­ola from Twelfth Night.

Right: Fiona Ken­nan per­form­ing as Jac­ques from As You Like It.

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