"Red Velvet" by Lolita Chakrabarti, at Shakespeare & Company, in Lenox, Mass., in 2015. Pictured: John Douglas Thompson and Christianna Nelson. (Photo by Enrico Spada)

Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey Announces Classics for 2016 Season

The season will include Noël Coward, Shakespeare, and Ionesco.

MADISON, N.J.: The Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey has announced its 2016 season, featuring Shakespeare, classic works, and events.

The season begins with Noël Coward’s A Song at Twilight (May 11–29), Coward’s final play about an elderly writer who is confronted by a former mistress. Edmond Genest will star, and Paul Mullins will direct.

Next will be the outdoor stage production of The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (abridged)(revised) (June 22—July 31), by Adam Long, Daniel Singer, and Jess Winfield. The comedy will present all of Shakespeare’s works performed by three actors. Jeffrey M. Bender will direct.

Following will be Shakespeare’s Coriolanus (July 6—24), a political play about civil insurrection and the conflict between social classes. Brian B. Crowe will direct.

Next will be Ionesco’s Exit the King (Aug. 10—28), a short one act about the last hour of King Berenger’s life. Artistic director Bonnie J. Monte will direct.

Following will be the New Jersey premiere of Lolita Chakrabarti’s Red Velvet (Sept. 7—25), about the life of Ira Aldridge, the first African-American actor to appear as Othello on the London stage.

Next will be Shakespeare’s Richard III (Oct. 5—Nov. 6), a history play about the power-hungry King Richard III and his short reign. Mullins will direct.

The season will conclude with A Child’s Christmas in Wales (Nov. 9—Jan. 1, 2017), a musical by Jeremy Brooks and Adrian Mitchell, adapted from the story by Dylan Thomas, about the magic of the holidays and a child’s imagination. Joseph Discher will direct.

Also part of the season programming, Shakespeare’s First Folio from the Folger Shakespeare Library will be on display at Drew University (Oct. 3—31), in conjunction with the company’s production of Richard III.

The season will also include the one-night-only events “Something Wicked This Way Comes” (Oct. 24), a 90-minute presentation of material from Shakespeare’s Macbeth, and “Something Merry This Way Comes” (Dec. 12), a presentation of holiday tales, songs, and poems for all ages.

The company’s reading series “Lend Us Your Ears” will feature company actors, guest artists, and talk-back sessions. Reading titles and dates are yet to be announced.

The Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey, founded in 1963, is a professional theatre producing classic works located on the campus of Drew University.

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