Asolo Repertory Theatre presents its New Stages Tour, an FSU/Asolo Conservatory for Actor Training production of MACBETH, from the play by William Shakespeare. This 60-minute adaptation includes post show discussions at each performance. As a third touring season begins, New Stages will travel to schools and community organizations across the state of Florida. Last year a record 12,000 audience members were reached throughout the state, with 44 performances at 36 venues. This new adaptation of MACBETH by Stephanie Fleischmann and Dmitry Troyanovsky and directed by Troyanovsky, will embark on a two month tour beginning October 2. Performances can be scheduled by contacting the Education & Outreach staff at Asolo Rep. Special Opening Night public performances in the Cook Theatre will be held on October 4 at 6:00 pm & 8:30 pm with a reception between performances, which is included in the ticket price.
Is there a moment when possessing the power of a country goes from the dream one wishes to attain, to the nightmare from which one must escape? See what happens when ambition becomes the object of obsession as Macbeth plots to become King of Scotland, leading him into a world of evil, deceit and murder. Shakespeare’s masterpiece gets a bold and imaginative new look, as MACBETH raises the issues surrounding power and ambition that are as relevant today in light of an American election year as they were more than 400 years ago.
“Though of course Shakespeare is a British icon, this year’s New Stages production of MACBETH is, in actuality, the true kickoff of Asolo Rep’s American Character Project,” Asolo Rep’s Producing Artistic Director, Michael Donald Edwards remarked. “We are part of a larger cultural conversation. In this election year, as we look to our own challenging choices regarding the most powerful position in our country, this timeless story still has great potency and charge.”
“MACBETH is one of the best plays about power, its temptations and excesses. These themes become ever more compelling in a big election year. How far is one willing to go in order to acquire and keep power? Is ruthlessness necessary to achieve one’s political ambitions?” Said MACBETH director Dmitry Troyanovsky regarding his vision: “Living in a democratic society, we may be somewhat protected from the worst of political monsters. But our elected politicians still have to make life and death decisions —and sometimes sanction blood shedding (presumably in our name). When we look at Macbeth’s personal tragedy, we must remember that today our own ideals and lives are intertwined with those who lead us.”
Following the success of last year’s tour, MACBETH is affording the New Stages program opportunities for great strides forward. “With MACBETH, we really want to emphasize how schools should allow even more students to experience a production like this. Shakespeare shouldn’t be limited to just theatre students, or to students perceived to ‘get it’ more easily. Shakespeare is for everyone,” Asolo Rep’s Education and Outreach Director, Brian Hersh, stated. To support this vision, Asolo Rep’s Education & outreach offers a special discount to schools that book more than one performance. Regarding this particular production of MACBETH for New Stages, Hersh says, “We are looking forward to adding some musical elements. Saskia Lane is an incredible songwriter, and she crafted a beautiful song that will flourish in its own way when the casts have a chance to work with it and make it their own using their unique instrumental and vocal abilities.”
The company members of MACBETH are enrolled in the Florida State University/Asolo Conservatory for Actor Training, a three-year graduate program culminating in a Master of Fine Arts degree. Only 12 students are chosen each year from thousands who audition in four cities nationwide. Actors are provided with rigorous training in a professional theatre environment, including membership in the Asolo Repertory Theatre company during their third year. Asolo Rep presents the FSU/Asolo Conservatory for Actor Training Production ofMACBETH to highlight the skills of the third year Acting Company, all of whom will be seen in the upcoming Asolo Rep mainstage season. Graduates of the program have appeared on and off Broadway, in regional theatres, in feature films and on television. U.S. News and World Report consistently places FSU’s graduate theatre programs in its top-tier rankings, one of the few public university programs so honored.
Asolo Repertory Theatre subsidizes the costs of the New Stages touring program through charitable contributions from foundations, corporations and individual donors. For more information on how to support New Stages, please contact Tricia Mire, Development Director at 941.351.9010 ext. 4700.