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The Toledo Repertoire Theatre will open its 80th season Friday with Shakespeare's Hamlet followed by I Hate Hamlet in November.
It sounds like those choosing the season had a difference of opinion, but that's not the case, said Hamlet director Matthew Gretzinger.
I Hate Hamlet is "a comedy full of love for Hamlet," Gretzinger said. "They speak to each other."
This Shakespeare tragedy, believed to be his longest play, has its own humor, too. "That's mainly what I love about it," Gretzinger said. He also finds the subject matter easy to relate to. "In my life I lost my father about 10 years ago. I sympathize with Hamlet's pain and also with Ophelia later in the play because her father dies."
Gretzinger applied for the director position when he learned Hamlet was on tap. "I'm a really, really big Shakespeare fan. I love the play, and I've done it before," he said. To make it more manageable for the audience, Gretzinger has edited the drama to run about two hours and 45 minutes.
The cast includes Jeffrey Sneed as Hamlet, James Trumm as Polonius and the gravedigger, Elizabeth Cottle as Ophelia, Heath Huber as Horatio, Jeffrey Albright as Player King, Kate Abu-Absi as Gertrude, and John Paul Welch as Laertes. Barbara Barkan, who will direct I Hate Hamlet, will play Player Queen. Qarie Marshall has the dual role of fight choreographer and Claudius.
"Hamlet" will be performed at 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday through Sept. 22 at Toledo Repertoire Theatre, 16 10th Street. Additional performances are at 2:30 p.m. Sunday and Sept. 23 and at 8 p.m. Sept. 20. Tickets are $20 for adults, $18 for seniors, $10 for ages 13 and older, and $5 for ages 12 and younger. Information: 419-243-9277 or toledorep.org.
Hall of Fame
COLUMBUS -- Waterville Playshop was recently inducted into the Ohio Community Theatre Association's (OCTA) Hall of Fame at the OCTA State Conference 2012 in Columbus.
A plaque was presented by Joe Barton, OCTA president, to Sam Macera, a seasoned Playshop director and 2010 Hall of Fame inductee, Gary Buerk, chairman, and Matt Zwyer, former chairman.
The Playshop's newsletter "Call and Cues" received four OCTA awards in the categories of writing, layout, and quality, OCTA news and use of graphics, and photography.
The Lourdes University Drama Society is accepting applications for its annual One-Act Playwriting Competition.
The competition is open to playwrights 18 and older. Entries must be one-act stage plays that run 8 to 15 minutes. Submissions must be original, unpublished, and produced outside of an academic environment. Scripts will be judged on concept, dialogue, dramatic action, and characterization.
Winners will receive $250 for first place, $100 for second place, and $50 for third place.
The winning plays will be presented in Lourdes University's Drama Society's Festival of One Acts in April. Entries must be postmarked by Oct. 15. Winners will be notified on Dec. 2.
Information: www.lourdes.edu/dramasociety or by calling the Keith Ramsdell, the Drama Society advisor, 419-517-8881.
Mice and Men
LIMA -- Amil Tellers of Dramatics will present a tragic story this weekend when it opens Of Mice and Men in the Encore Theatre here.
Lennie looks like a man but has the mentality of a young boy with a passion for things soft and cuddly. He doesn't realize his strength and affection can kill. His friend George must decide Lennie's fate before matters are taken into others' hands.
The drama is based on John Steinbeck's novel of the same name which some consider offensive because of racist and offensive language. It has been required reading in many schools for decades and also is on the list of the American Library Association's list of Banned and Challenged Classics.
"Of Mice and Men" will be performed at 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday through Sept. 22 by Amil Tellers of Dramatics in the Encore Theatre, 991 North Shore Dr., Lima. Additional performances are at 2 p.m. Sunday and Sept. 23. Tickets are $14 for adults, $12 for seniors, and $9 for students. Information: 419-223-8866 or amiltellers.org.
FREMONT -- American workers' hopes, dreams, concerns, and joys are explored this weekend when Fremont Community Theatre presents Working on its stage.
This musical had a short 24-performance run on Broadway in 1978 and is based on Studs Terkel's book of interviews of American workers. This revised version of the Stephen Schwartz and Nina Faso work features updated lyrics and some new music by James Taylor and Stephen Schwartz.
"Working" will be performed at 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday, and at 2 p.m. Sunday, through Sept. 23 at Fremont Community Theatre, 1551 Dickinson St., Fremont. Tickets are $12 for adults and $10 for seniors and students. Information: 419-332-0695 or fremontcommunitytheatre.org.
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