2016: Celebrating 400 years of Shakespeare's legacy!

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Pictured in banner: Margo Hall, Marcus Henderson, and Nemuna Ceesay in California Shakespeare Theater’s production of A Raisin in the Sun, directed by Patricia McGregor; photo by Kevin Berne.

Jonathan Moscone Dear Friends,

There’s nothing quite like that fresh feeling of a new season.
Each year, I see the Bruns blossom with the flowers of our labor—the collective effort of hundreds of artists, actors, and creative staff making these intricate plays come to vital, intelligent life.

And when fall arrives, the moment comes when I get to share the next season with you.

This coming year, we’re bookending our season with Shakespeare—starting with his beautiful comic masterpiece, Twelfth Night, directed by Christopher Liam Moore. When Chris directed Lady Windermere’s Fan for us in 2013, I knew he could delve into comedy, romance, and language with a sense of humanity and style, and I’m thrilled to welcome him back to the Bruns.

For our second show, I am excited to announce Magic Theater artistic director Loretta Greco’s Cal Shakes directing debut. She will be making a production of Pedro Calderón de la Barca’s stunning Spanish Golden Age classic, Life is a Dream adapted by Pulitzer-Prize winner Nilo Cruz. Cruz brings urgency and accessibility to Calderon’s mythic, poetic play where reality and dreams collide in a story of human will battling fate.

Following that, I am delighted to tell you that I’ll be directing Charles Ludlam’s madcap Victorian comic melodrama The Mystery of Irma Vep, featuring the fabulous Danny Scheie in a gender-bending tour-de-force performance. With references to theatrical and cinematic classics like Wuthering Heights, Rebecca, and Shakespeare, Irma Vep is a dazzling and dizzying piece of theater that I hope brings a great deal of joy to you.

2015 will culminate with the return of one of the most original, daring and talented artists in the American theater, Amanda Dehnert, who will be directing the brilliant tragedy King Lear.Ever since I saw Amanda’s revelatory production of Julius Caesar in Ashland a few years ago, I have been trying to bring her here to grapple with Shakespeare’s work with her customary bravery and authenticity. The role of Lear will be played by Anthony Heald, one of our country’s most gifted actors, who has been seen on film, television, Broadway, and in such roles as Shylock in The Merchant of Venice as a veteran company member of the Oregon Shakespeare Festival.

I love everything we do at Cal Shakes to bring communities together for joyful, authentic and inclusive theater experiences. And I love making it all with you—my friends.

I can’t wait for you to join us for another fantastic year.

 signature of jonathan moscone
Jonathan Moscone

Plays, dates, and artists are subject to change.

Photo of Jonathan Moscone by Kevin Berne.