Santa Cruz Good Times

Wednesday
Jan 28th
Text size
  • Increase font size
  • Default font size
  • Decrease font size

Shakespeare In Love

shakespearefallsinlove

Shakespeare Santa Cruz falls in love with ‘Romeo and Juliet’

It’s the love story that never dies. However, in this case, the lovers at the heart of the tale do have a tragic ending, but still, the story at large in “Romeo and Juliet” is one that endures time and spans generational differences. It is the classic tale of boy meets girl, families forbid the love affair, and the lovers go against the wishes of their families. It’s a story about love and what happens when people try to interfere, because, as we all know, don’t tell people what to do when they’re in love.

Shakespeare Santa Cruz’s rendition of “Romeo and Juliet” plays in the Sinsheimer-Stanley Festival Glen through Aug. 31. Opening night was packed and the cast received a standing ovation for a superb production. Other than a few actors (one lead in particular) having volume problems and falling quiet sometimes, the play was outstanding and entertaining. However, keep in mind—it’s a three-hour excursion in the woods with these actors, and even as amazing as the show was, you wish they could trim down the production—it runs too long.

Setting those minor concerns aside, director Kim Rubinstein has crafted together an elegant, classy, beautiful production. Her style is crisp and edgy at the same time. With beautiful lighting arrangements, a perfect musical score, stunning costumes and stellar acting, this play is for the most part, flawless. Rubinstein invites us, the audience, to the woods for an intimate look at love and everything that comes along with it.

We begin by seeing our lovers as soon as the play starts. There’s the lovely Juliet (Caitlin FitzGerald) in a lovely performance, and her beau Romeo (Charles Pasternak) who brings an intensity and honesty to his work. As everyone knows, the story that William Shakespeare penned goes like this: There are two families, the Capulets and the Montagues. In this rendition of the play, Rubinstein uses social class as the backdrop and conflict for the warring families. The Capulets are by far the “better off” of the two conflicting tribes here.

{mosimage}

Young Juliet (nearly age 14) falls for Romeo of the Montague family. They marry in secret and have a night to consummate their marriage. However, Juliet’s family forbids her from seeing Romeo and informs her that she’ll be getting married very soon. To trick her family, Juliet takes a potion that sends her into a semi-comatose state. They find her, grieve, and place her in a tomb.

Meanwhile, Romeo hears the news and believes Juliet is dead. He rushes to the side of his bride. There, he takes a poison and kills himself. But Juliet awakens from her sedated state to find her true love dead. So she stabs herself and dies. They are finally together, but in death.

The story is a tale that remains current. And so, it seems that Rubinstein has chosen to set “Romeo and Juliet” in modern day—but in Hungary (hence the gypsy scenes that pop up from time to time). Costume designer Olivera Gajic has infused a contemporary flair into the costumes, giving the story a current feel. In addition, doses of modern day culture are thrown into the play, including a shaving and brow tweezing session for Juliet. All of this works, because this story that was written so long ago applies to today—whether it be to people in Hungary or those in the SSC Festival Glen.

While the acting company is superb, there’s one character that steals the show—Nurse (Saundra McClain). Her performance is delicious as the caretaker to Juliet. She’s witty, modern, funny and charismatic. Kudos to McClain for her beautiful and natural performance: down-to-earth, yet also boisterous at the same time. Bravo.

Comments (0)Add Comment

Write comment
smaller | bigger

busy
 

Share this on your social networks

Bookmark and Share

Share this

Bookmark and Share

 

Force of Nature

Santa Cruz’s Carlie Statsky brings her love of the natural world to the hyper-personal art of wedding photography

 

Mercury Retrograde in Aquarius

The magical time of Mercury’s retrograde cycle is here once again, until Feb. 11, and then some. The Mercury retro cycle actually lasts eight weeks when we consider its retrograde shadow, giving us six months a year for review. We know the rules of Mercury retro: Be careful with everything; cars, driving, money, resources, friends, friendships, groups, interactions, thinking, talking, communications. Avoid big purchases, important meetings and important repairs. Mercury retrograde times are for review, reassessment and rest. Our minds are overloaded from the last Mercury retro. Our minds need to assess what we’ve done since October—eliminating what is not needed, keeping what’s important, preparing for new information in the next three months (till mid-May). Mercury in Aquarius retrograde … we reinvent ourselves, seek the unusual, we don’t hide, we’re just careful. We live in two worlds; outer appearances and inner reckonings, with both sides of our brain activated. Yet, like the light of the Gemini twins, one light waxes (inner world), the other (outer realities) wanes. Like Virgo, we see what’s been overlooked—assessing, ordering and organizing information. It’s an entirely inner process. When speaking we may utter only half of the sentence. We’re in the underworld, closer to Spirit, eyes unseeing, senses alerted, re-doing things over and over till we sometimes collapse. Because we’re in other realms, we’re wobbly, make mistakes, and don’t really know what we want. It’s not a time for decisions. Not yet. It’s a time of review. And completing things. Mercury retro: integration, slowing down, resolution, rapprochement.

 

The New Tech Nexus

Community leaders in science and technology unite to form web-based networking program

 

Film, Times & Events: Week of January 23

Santa Cruz area movie theaters >
Sign up for Good Times weekly newsletter
Get the latest news, events

RSS Feed Burner

 Subscribe in a reader

Latest Comments

 

Bye Bye Benten!

Benten closing, plus Award-winning gin, a massive burrito and chocolate review

 

Trout Gulch Vineyards

Scanning the shelves of Deluxe Foods of Aptos, which carries an impressive selection of local and imported wines, I picked up a bottle of Trout Gulch Vineyards Chardonnay 2012, described as “a local favorite” by the busy market.

 

Cremer House

What’s old is cutting-edge again in Felton

 

How are you going to make a tangible difference in your community this year?

Spread more kindness and compassion.