Monday, June 26, 2006

The San Francisco Shakespeare Festival

The San Francisco Shakespeare Festival

'The Tempest' is one of Shakespeare's most incredible works. If you love Shakespeare, you owe it to yourself to go see this wonderful production. Kenneth Kelleher's concept is unique and captivating and the acting is exrtraordinary.

This summer, family and friends are sure to enjoy seeing Prospero's mysterious island in Bay Area parks, when the San Francisco Shakespeare Festival presents The Tempest free of charge in Pleasanton, Cupertino, San Mateo, Oakland and San Francisco. Kenneth Kelleher (2003's Love's Labour's Lost, 2004's Twelfth Night, and 2005's Much Ado About Nothing), returns to direct this compelling tale of the banished Duke Prospero, who, after 12 years of exile, shipwrecks his betrayers and reclaims his rightful place in the world.

The play is probably best remembered for the spirit Ariel and monster Caliban, who both serve Prospero and his daughter Miranda on the island. Ariel creates the "tempest" of the title and, in the storm's resulting shipwreck, four nobles are thrown up on shore: Prospero's treacherous brother Antonio, King Alonso of Naples, the king's brother Sebastian, and the loyal counselor Gonzalo.

Political intrigue and magical manipulations join with comedy and romance as the steward Stephano and jester Trinculo, drunk on the ship's store of ale, plot with Caliban to overthrow Prospero. The king's son Ferdinand falls in love with Miranda. In the end, Prospero forgives the traitors, frees his loyal servant Ariel and destroys his magical book and staff.

The shows are FREE, and lawn seating is available on a first-come, first-served basis. Bring your family, friends, a blanket, and a picnic to enjoy this professional theater production! There are no tickets necessary for Free Shakespeare in the Park.

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