Summer Theatre Offerings Go On Sale
● By Kathryn
©2011 Zach Frailey
Tryon Palace Performing Arts Series presents:
ECU/Loessen Summer Theatre July 3 – 7
Carolinian Shakespeare Festival August 2 – 19
Ratio Theatre Company August 24 – September 2
Drama, comedy, mystery and intrigue all come to the Tryon Palace Performing Arts Series this summer as three of eastern North Carolina’s finest theatre companies take the stage in Cullman Performance Hall at the North Carolina History Center in New Bern, North Carolina.
The Carolinian Shakespeare Festival returns for its second year in the series and opens its 14th season in New Bern. Both ECU/Loessen Summer Theatre and Ratio Theatre Company appear for the first time in the series in Cullman Performance Hall.
“We are delighted to offer such a wide variety of top-notch theatre productions in Tryon Palace’s Performing Arts Series this summer,” remarked Tryon Palace’s Brad Schulenberg. “Last summer was the first season for the Carolinian Shakespeare Festival here; and anyone who attended witnessed what a great setting Cullman Performance Hall is for theatre. We are especially pleased to be adding to our series the ECU/Loessen Summer Theatre program and Ratio Theatre Company.”
ECU/Loessin Summer Theatre, a presentation of East Carolina University’s School of Theatre and Dance, performs three very different plays in repertory during its July 3 – 7 run in Cullman Performance Hall. Featured are Collision Course—a 60s Retro, a collection of a dozen short plays from the best young playwrights of the turbulent 1960s who became America's leading dramatists of the next three decades—also including some of the best of 60s rock and roll; Our Town, Thornton Wilder's beloved American classic; and Seven in One Blow—a children's theatre play, developed by Randy Sharp and the Axis Theatre company of New York, a contemporary "take" on the Grimm Brothers' classic fairy tale with princesses, monsters, ogres, and even a talking green-pea. Tickets are now on sale online at www.ecuarts.com , or by phone at 1-800-ECU-ARTS (328-2787) or 252-328-6829.
The Carolinian Shakespeare Festival performs William Shakespeare’s highly popular Much Ado About Nothing Thursdays through Sundays, August 3 - 19. In this spirited comedy, when soldiers return from war, the romantic battles begin. Reluctant lovers Beatrice and Benedick elevate the art of the quarrel to a "merry war" of glittering wordplay. In sunny Italy, hearts are won, lost and won again, all for the glory of love—and who gets the last word.
Festival producing Artistic Director Mary McGinley commented, “We’re so happy to have been invited back by Tryon Palace to present the festival at the new North Carolina History Center again. Much Ado will go wonderfully in Cullman Performance Hall. This play is an audience favorite with a big cast. It should be a lot of fun!” Tickets go on sale June 1. Call (252) 639-3524 or visit the North Carolina History Center ticket desk.
Ratio Theatre, New Bern's only full-time, resident professional theatre company, opens its fourth season August 24 as it debuts at Cullman Performance Hall. Featured Fridays through Sundays, August 24 to September 2 is John Patrick Shanley's brilliant and powerful drama, Doubt, A Parable, winner of the 2005 Pulitzer Prize and Tony Award. Set in 1964 at a Catholic school in the Bronx, this intense drama unfolds around a possibly well-meaning priest being accused of immoral behavior by a suspicious and cynical nun.
The company’s co-founder and Artistic Director Joey Infinito remarked, “We’re very proud to partner with Tryon Palace and to be able to participate in their Performing Arts Series. The facility is magnificent and I encourage everyone to take advantage of everything it has to offer.”
Ratio Theatre Company continues their season at Tryon Palace’s Cullman Performance Hall in November (God of Carnage), January (Crumbs From the Table of Joy) and March (Songs For a New World). Tickets go on sale June 1 at the Ratio Theatre Company Office, 901 Pollock St. in New Bern, online at www.ratiotheatre.org , or by phone at (252) 639-3524.
Designed by some of the same architectural team responsible for the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, D.C., Tryon Palace’s new Cullman Performance Hall is one of the region’s finest small theaters. With seating limited to fewer than 200 people, the hall provides an exceptional and intimate performance experience.
For more information on events at Tryon Palace, listen to Public Radio East, Tryon Palace Performing Arts Series media sponsor, and visit us online at www.tryonpalace.org .
Tryon Palace, located in New Bern, NC, is part of the Office of Archives and History, an agency of the North Carolina Department of Cultural Resources. Tryon Palace is one of North Carolina’s most significant historic sites. It is the home of the Governor’s Palace, North Carolina’s first colonial and first state capitol, and includes historic buildings, gardens and the North Carolina History Center, which revolutionizes the visitor experience through use of the latest interactive technology. The History Center includes galleries, a performance hall, the museum store and a waterfront café. Tryon Palace’s mission is to engage present and future generations in the history of North Carolina from early settlement in 1710, the development of statehood and into the mid-twentieth century. It is dedicated to collecting, interpreting and preserving objects, buildings, landscapes and events that enrich understanding of the making of our state and nation.
Main entry to Tryon Palace is North Carolina History Center at Tryon Palace, 529 S. Front St., New Bern. Tickets and visitor information are available there. For directions and further information about special events, programs or group tours, employment and more, visit our web site: www.tryonpalace.org or phone (800) 767-1560 or (252) 639-3500.
The N.C. Department of Cultural Resources annually serves more than 19 million people through its 27 historic sites, seven history museums, two art museums, the nation’s first state-supported Symphony Orchestra, the State Library, the N.C. Arts Council, and the State Archives. The N.C. Department of Cultural Resources champions North Carolina’s creative industry, which employs nearly 300,000 North Carolinians and contributes more than $41 billion to the state’s economy. To learn more, visit www.ncculture.com .