Kimber gushes approval.
My family has season tickets to Hale Center Theater, a theater company located in Orem, and one of the few good playhouses in Utah Valley. Right now, the HCT is putting on William Shakespeare's As You Like It, and it's a rather excellent production. I would like to recommend that everyone should go see it, but since few people read this blog (and some of our readers are in other states), it's unlikely that my favorable review will make a difference. Still, good things deserve a good word, so here are a few.
I've seen the director of this production, Chris Clark, put on other Shakespeare plays before. Actually only one, but his work has been consistently excellent between the two plays. He understands how Shakespeare was originally performed (in a rather bawdy fashion, if truth be told), and he stays faithful to that. His renditions of Shakespeare make the plays understandable, the characters loveable, and the performances memorable (in a "oh, how marvelous" way, not a "I thought it would never end" sort of way), which is no small feat for a director of Shakespeare.
As You Like It is a neat little romantic comedy where everyone gets paired off at the end, despite a bit of cross-dressing, and the audience gets to enjoy more than a few good laughs along the way. The casting is excellent (I've seen the play twice; both sets of casts have their strong and their weak points, but they're both worth watching), and the actors have truely committed to their roles. There's singing, dancing, fighting, and even a dash of physical comedy remeniscent of Charlie Chaplin. A string duet accompanies the action of the play with surprisingly fitting music, the sets are ingenious, and the costumes are deftly crafted. All in all, this is one of the better productions HTC has put on in a while, and one of the best versions of Shakespeare I've seen, including the MST3K version of Hamlet.
I wish I had more power to get people to go to this play, but I don't, so the best that I can hope for is that someone more influential than I recognizes the talent involved (on all fronts) in this production, and forces a large group of school children to see it. If you are reading this, I suggest you go quickly, before all the tickets are snapped up by high schoolers looking to fill their Shakespeare requirement for senior English.
35 minutes ago