Year Ends on High Note for S&Co.
Looking forward to 34Th Season
By: Tony Simotes - Jan 04, 2012
With its 34th Performance Season still running until March 25, Shakespeare & Company Artistic Director Tony Simotes announces a strong end to its 2011 performance year on both critical and financial fronts. S&Co. enters the New Year having just closed another successful production of The Santaland Diaries, which topped last year’s box office by 127%, and also raised $5,000 on behalf of Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS. The re-imagined Santaland, which starred Company favorite Ryan Winkles, is a new holiday tradition for the Company, as is its yearly support for Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS. Simotes is elated to offer the Company’s contribution to this well deserving cause on the coattails of the New Year. This marks the second year in a row that the Company has raised funds for the nation’s leading industry-based HIV/AIDS fundraising and grant-making organization.
“I am so pleased that the patrons of Shakespeare & Company recognize what a valuable organization Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS has become,” Simotes said, “As a company we have made a commitment—as theater artists and as people—to give back to the community. Last year we raised almost $5,000 and I am very happy to announce we have exceeded that goal. In the spirit of the holidays, I am incredibly heartened by the response of the community to our call for donations, and I sincerely hope that we continue to support Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS in the years to come.”
Shakespeare & Company is also celebrating the New Year by looking back at the productions that made 2011 such a tremendous critical success. This summer’s production As You Like It, directed by Simotes, was recently named the year’s best theatrical production by the Berkshire Eagle, with Shelagh Stephenson’s contemporary familial drama The Memory of Water listed among the top 10. Many of the Company artists were also named in the best designs and acting categories.
“At Shakespeare & Company we are committed to offering fresh and invigorating productions of Shakespeare,” Simotes said, “We are also committed to exposing the talents of contemporary dramatists with new and provocative work. Last year we were able to do both with great success. I have no doubt that we’ll ride this momentum into our 35th Anniversary Season and continue to offer the Berkshires exhilarating theater in the year ahead.”
In the coming weeks, Shakespeare & Company will announce the lineup for its 35th Anniversary season, but the Company isn’t quite ready to put a cap on its 2011/2012 season. Rehearsals will begin this month for the Moliere comedy The Learned Ladies, directed by Founding Artistic Director Tina Packer. The Learned Ladies opens on February 3rd and runs through March 25th.