On the 400th anniversary of the Bard’s death, Class Act Theatre presents The Winter’s Tale – a timeless classic romance of jealousy and forgiveness reimagined in a modern setting and performed by some of Melbourne’s most talented actors at Northcote Town Hall from 1 June 2016.
Written circa 1611, only five years before Shakespeare died, The Winter’s Tale belongs to a set of later Shakespearean plays known today as romances. These dramas are full of spectacle and set pieces and occasionally partake of supernatural beings to drive their plots.
The Winter’s Tale is both tragic and comic, but ultimately it transcends these genres by embracing fairytale themes of separation, reconciliation, and love.
The play focuses on the jealous king, Leontes, who accuses his pregnant wife Hermione of adultery with his best friend and fellow king Polixenes. Leontes refuses to listen to her pleas of innocence, takes away her eight year old son Mamillius, and sends away her newly born baby daughter to die.
At her trial he ignores the divine intervention of Apollo’s oracle and continues with the case. Immediately his young son Mamillius dies and Hermione collapses, also apparently dead. Leontes is wracked with remorse. After a gap of sixteen years his now grown daughter Perdita, who in fact escaped death, arrives with her lover Florizel, son of Polixenes.
Florizel’s father has pursued them and all are reconciled. In a final moving coda they go to visit a statue of the dead Hermione, and the true magic of the fairy tale brings about a beautiful happy ending.
Class Act Theatre has produced almost 20 professional theatre productions in WA between 2003 and 2014. Several of these have been nominated for Equity Guild Awards (now called PAWA).
These include: Romeo & Juliet with hip hop, Frames (written by David Helgott’s sister, Louise), Ghosts (winner of a PAWA award), Medea, Merchant of Venice, Loot, Hamlet, A Day in the Death of Joe Egg, The Importance of Being Earnest, The Canterbury Tales, Lysistrata, Hotel Sorrento, Twelfth Night, The Summer of the Seventeenth Doll (winner of an Equity Guild Award), 2 productions of Othello and 3 of Macbeth!
Angelique Malcolm produced all of these shows and was awarded the 2014 PAWA Award for a significant contribution to the WA professional theatre industry. The Winter’s Tale marks Class Act Theatre’s first professional mainstream production in Melbourne.
Director: Stephen Lee Featuring: Adam May, Adam McGurk, Alicia Beckhurst, Brian Edmond, Charlie Sturgeon, Angelique Malcolm, Ivy Latimer, Jimmy James Eaton, Katherine Innes, Paul Robertson Design: Jaz Wickson Assistant Director: Eva Torkkola Producer: Class Act Theatre.
The Winter’s Tale
Northcote Town Hall, 189 High Street, Northcote
Season: 1 – 11 June 2016
Bookings: (03) 9481 9500 or online at: www.northcotetownhall.com.au
For more information, visit: www.classact.com.au for details.
Image: Class Act Theatre presents The Winter’s Tale (supplied)