This April, Sweetline Theatre Company is presenting “Shakespeare’s Fairytales” at the historic Leaside Manor in St. John’s. The show shines a light on the origins of some of playwright William Shakespeare’s most beloved stories, including The Merchant of Venice, King Lear, The Winter’s Tale, As You Like It, and A Midsummer Night’s Dream.
“What some modern audiences may not know is that Shakespeare was influenced by fairytale traditions,” says storyteller Dale Jarvis, the storytelling coach for the production. “Many of Shakespeare’s plays derive their plots directly or indirectly from folktales.”
“Shakespeare’s Fairytales” stars Elizabeth Hicks, Lynn Panting, Lauren Shepherd, and Alanah Whiteway, spinning the tales that inspired the bard’s greatest stories.
To get ready for their show, the four actors were given different versions of the folktale or source material which had inspired or influenced their play. They started off working with Jarvis, playing with and retelling their stories, and finding their own versions of the tales.
“I’ve been to a lot of storytelling festivals in North America and Europe,” says Jarvis, “but I have never seen a performance quite like the one we are crafting now!”
Once the actors learned their stories, director Danielle Irvine, known lately for her work as Artistic Director of Perchance Theatre in Cupids, stepped in. She worked with the actors on movement and staging, and introduced quotes, phrases, and passages from Shakespeare’s plays that fit the stories.
“I’m excited to be working with this cast and exploring the text in new ways,” says Irvine. “And the setting in Leaside Manor will make this a very intimate, unique show.”
“Shakespeare’s Fairytales” runs April 28th-29th, 2016, at Leaside Manor, 39 Topsail Rd, St. John's, Newfoundland. Seating for the show is limited, and advance tickets are recommended, available at www.sweetlinetheatre.ca
To arrange a media interview about the show, contact Kelly Jones, Stage Manager, email@example.com