TOPANGA, CALIF.: Will Geer’s Theatricum Botanicum has announced its 2015 summer repertory season, under the collective header “Americana.” The shows presented will explore the notion of American identity with a combination of American plays and Shakespeare productions using American settings. Highlights include August: Osage County, Green Grow the Lilacs and As You Like It, the latter set in the post-Civil War South.
Opening the season will be the theatre’s ninth annual presentation of Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream. The production will be directed by company members Melora Marshall and Willow Geer.
Next will be As You Like It (June 7–Sept. 26), directed by artistic director Ellen Geer. In this version, the forest of Arden will be placed in the Reconstruction-era South, with live music from the period.
The American South will also be the setting for the next production: Christopher Sergel’s adaptation of Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird (June 13–Sept. 27). Next will be Tracy Letts’s Pulitzer-winning play August: Osage County (June 20–Sept. 27), about a dysfunctional family in Oklahoma.
Rounding out the season will be Lynn Riggs’s Green Grow the Lilacs (July 11–Sept. 26), directed by Geer. In the play that inspired Rodgers and Hammerstein’s Oklahoma!, a courtship between a rancher and his gal is jeopardized by a troublesome farmhand.
Will Geer’s Theatricum Botanicum was founded in the 1950s by Will Geer and currently performs in two outdoor amphitheatres. The plays in the 2015 season will be performed in repertory by the theatre’s company of actors.