“Romeo & Juliet,” Shakespeare's popular romantic tragedy of two star-crossed lovers, opens on the Wagner College Theatre’s Main Stage on Nov. 13 for a two-week run. It’s a timeless story of young passions caught between the feuding Capulet and Montague families.
The production is directed by David McDonald, Wagner Theatre’s head of voice. McDonald said he was especially excited because Wagner’s “Romeo” is set in the period of its original conception: Elizabethan England.
“There is great power in the Renaissance world that can particularly inform our understanding of the romance, the violence, the passion, the compassion and the lyrical beauty of this powerful love story,” he said.
McDonald makes his Main Stage directing debut, having directed last year’s popular “Five Women Wearing the Same Dress” in the college’s Stage One studio theater.
Playing the title roles are senior performance majors Robert J. Keir and Kelly Hubbell, joined by Steven Copp (Friar John), Phil Della Noce (Friar Lawrence), Tom De Michele (Paris), Doug Hanson (Capulet), Danielle James (Nurse), Tommy Joscelyn (Tybalt), Jesse McCaig (Apothecary), Brendan McCann (Prince), Greg Martins (Montague), Keland Sarno (Mercutio), Bianca Vitale (Lady Capulet) and Sam Weinstein (Lady Montague). Seniors Elizabeth Miller, Brittany Cattaruzza, Julia Karis and Sarah Rosen are members of the ensemble.
No other work of dramatic literature has been interpreted by as many artists and left as many enduring masterpieces in the performing arts canon as this tale of star-crossed lovers. “Romeo and Juliet” is currently playing on Broadway with screen star Orlando Bloom and Condola Rashad, and Off-Broadway at the Classic Stage Company with Julian Cihi and Elizabeth Olsen.
The Wagner College production of “Romeo and Juliet” features Broadway fight choreographer Chris Sordelet. The lighting, set and hair/wig designs are by WCT professor Phill Hickox and students Vicki Neal and Emilia Martin. Junior Jeana Shea is production stage manager.
“Romeo and Juliet” was previously presented by the Wagner College Theatre on its Main Stage in the 1979-80 season and at Stage One in the 2002-03 season.
“Romeo and Juliet” runs for two weeks, from Wednesday, Nov. 13 through Saturday, Nov. 16, and from Wednesday, Nov. 20 through Sunday, Nov. 24. Performances are Wednesday through Saturday at 8 p.m., with matinees on Saturday and Sunday at 2 p.m.
Single tickets are now on sale for Wagner College’s “Romeo and Juliet.” Ticket prices for all shows for those 12 and under are $16, and for those 13 to 18 years old are $18. For Wednesday and Thursday night shows, adult tickets are $25, and for seniors (62 and over) are $23. Tickets for Friday and Saturday evening shows and for all matinees for adults are $28, seniors $26. Wagner College students attend free with current ID.