The 2010 season, celebrating the 75th Anniversary of the Festival, is scheduled to begin previews on February 19 and close on October 24.
The season will be anchored by four plays by William Shakespeare, and in a nod to OSF’s first season, the two plays produced by Angus Bowmer in 1935 will be staged on the Elizabethan. for one week in October.
THE MERCHANT OF VENICE, directed by Rauch, and TWELFTH NIGHT (open in June) Also playing in repertory outside is HENRY IV, PART ONE, directed by PENNY METROPULOS, a longtime veteran with OSF, former associate artistic director, and the first woman to direct this play at OSF. HAMLET, directed by BILL RAUCH, will open at the top of the season in the Angus Bowmer Theatre and run throughout the season.
Also opening in February in the Angus Bowmer Theatre is PRIDE AND PREJUDICE, based on Jane Austen’s hugely popular romantic tale of Elizabeth Bennett and Mr. Darcy. Artistic Director Emerita LIBBY APPEL will direct. Alongside this great British classic, OSF, after 26 years, will bring back Maggie, Brick, Big Daddy and Big Mama in Tennessee Williams’s great American classic CAT ON A HOT TIN ROOF. CHRISTOPHER LIAM MOORE, director of this season’s Dead Man’s Cell Phone, will stage this turbulent tale of the decay of a Southern family. The fourth show to enter the repertory in the Angus Bowmer Theatre will be the delightfully frothy and romantic musical SHE LOVES ME (music by Jerry Bock, lyrics by Sheldon Harnick, book by Joe Masteroff) based on the Hungarian play Parfumerie — which also gave rise to the 1940 film The Shop around the Corner and Nora Ephron’s 1998 remake You’ve Got Mail. The production will be directed by award-winning artist REBECCA BAYLA TAICHMAN, a self-confessed lover of musicals and winner of the Harold Prince Award for Outstanding Direction of a Musical.
Staying true to his mission of bringing world classics to OSF stages, Rauch commissioned internationally recognized director and writer Ping Chong to adapt THRONE OF BLOOD, Akira Kurosawa’s 1957 film, for the stage. The film is an adaptation of Shakespeare’s Macbeth set in feudal Japan. PING CHONG will also direct.
In the New Theatre, Lisa Kron’s WELL will open at the top of the season directed by OSF Associate Artist and actor JAMES EDMONDSON. The play follows a daughter’s comic metatheatrical journey to understand her mother’s illness. Opening in March is Lynn Nottage’s acclaimed new drama RUINED, about a tough businesswoman, Mama Nadi, and the women she protects and profits from amidst a bloody conflict that rages outside. OSF has also produced Nottage’s Crumbs from the Table of Joy in 2000 and Intimate Apparel in 2006. The final show to open in the New Theatre is the first of the commissions for American Revolutions: The United States History Cycle, announced in June 2008. AMERICAN NIGHT by Culture Clash will be directed by New York-based and Obie Award-winning artist JO BONNEY. The play weaves multiple narratives about ordinary people who, in extraordinarily difficult circumstances, resist the status quo and sacrifice their well-being for the benefit of others.