Saturday, December 12, 2009

Janice Blixt named MSF artistic director

New MSF Artistic Director Janice Blixt
Press release from the Michigan Shakespeare Festival, November 11, 2009:
After months of searching and interviews, The Michigan Shakespeare Festival is proud to announce the selection of their new Artistic Director: Janice L. Blixt.
Janice is currently the Producing Artistic Director of A CREW OF PATCHES THEATRE COMPANY, a Chicago repertory company specializing in Shakespeare. For the Patches she has directed such classics as: JULIUS CAESAR, MACBETH, TWELFTH NIGHT, and ROMEO & JULIET. For other Chicago theatres she has directed ROMEO & JULIET, A MIDSUMMER NIGHT’S DREAM, THE COMEDY OF ERRORS, THE MERCHANT OF VENICE, and HENRY V. She has also been the vocal director and text coach for OTHELLO, A MIDSUMMER NIGHT’S DREAM, THE TAMING OF THE SHREW, and HAMLET.
Janice has also made a name for herself in the world of workshops and classes, teaching classical text work, voice, and Folio Technique for professional actors, Eastern Michigan University, Loyola University, The City Colleges of Chicago, and for high schools around Chicago and its suburbs.
Janice received her MFA in Acting from Detroit’s Hilberry Repertory Theatre at Wayne State and BA’s in Theatre Arts and Literature from Bradley University.
While in the Detroit area, she performed for Meadow Brook, the Jewish Ensemble Theatre, Heartlande, and the Shadow Theatre Company. Since moving to Chicago, she has worked with City Lit Theatre, Bowen Park, The Next, and Timeline.
Her great joy is, and has always been, Shakespeare. Past roles include Lady Macbeth; Viola, Olivia, and Maria in TWELFTH NIGHT; Portia and Metella in JULIUS CAESAR, Lady Capulet and the Nurse in ROMEO & JULIET; Isabella in MEASURE FOR MEASURE; Rosalind in AS YOU LIKE IT; Beatrice in MUCH ADO ABOUT NOTHING; Dionyza in PERICLES, Isabella in EDWARD III.
Janice is delighted to return to the Michigan Shakespeare Festival, where she performed Kate in THE TAMING OF THE SHREW, Titania in A MIDSUMMER NIGHT'S DREAM, and Queen Elizabeth in RICHARD III. She is married to longtime MSF actor, director, and fight choreographer David Blixt, with whom she shares two wonderful children, Dashiell and Evelyn.
Janice is both honored and immensely excited at this opportunity, just as the Michigan Shakespeare Festival is delighted and honored to have her. Please join us this summer for her inaugural season of ROMEO & JULIET and A COMEDY OF ERRORS!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Give summer Shakespeare getaway

The Michigan Shakespeare Festival is offering a great gift for the Shakespeare lover on your holiday list. You can purchase a one-, two-, or three-play package to the Michigan Shakespeare Festival in Jackson, Michigan next summer. Packages are available for the weekends of July 23, 24, and 25; July 30, 31, and August 1; and August 6, 7, and 8 when two Shakespeare plays: Romeo & Juliet and The Comedy of Errors, and Alfred Uhry's Driving Miss Daisy will be offered in repertory.

Packages are available for:
$99 for two tickets to one play and dinner for two at Daryl's Downtown (special menu, no alcohol included)
$250 for two tickets to two plays, dinner for two at Daryl's Downtown (special menu, no alcohol included), a Saturday overnight at The Claddagh including full breakfast Sunday morning, and a backstage tour and a private meeting with the new MSF artistic director (name not announced at this time).
$299 for two tickets to three plays, and all of the above. Taxes are included in all packages, but gratuities are not.

The brochure says: 
Michigan Shakespeare Festival features professional Shakespearean actors from across the country. Performances are held in the intimate Michael Baughman Theatre at the Potter Center at Jackson Community College. Bolt, Beranek and Newman, international experts in acoustics, designed the theater. Seats were raised to create better sight lines, the house was electronically tuned to ensure even sound quality throughout, and light and sound equipment was designed and build especially for the Baughman. Experience Shakespeare in a superb setting!
 Benefits include, according to the brochure:
  • Choose the package that works best for you.
  • Choose the dates and plays you prefer.
  • Pay less for tickts, lodging and means than you would on your own.
  • Take advantage of a flexible payment plan.
  • Forget about making reservations -- MSF will do everything for you.
Holiday packages will be tailored to the clients request and are not available through the Potter Center Box Office or online. Call the MSF at 517-998-3673 to order a package. The holiday package is available through December 31, 2009. MSF development consultant Kyle Anne Jansen said MSF hopes to offer similar packages in the future.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Oberon chair weighs in on Shapiro

Oberon Chairperson Tom Hunter posted a comment on De Vere Society Secretary Richard Malim's report on the Nov. 28 conference at The Globe theater in London on the Shakespeare Oxford Society blog.

Hunter's long comment addresses his understanding of Malim's report on James Shapiro's view of the authorship question -- a view that will be elucidated with the publication of Shapiro's Contested Will to be published March/April 2010.

Hunter said, in part:
Shapiro appears to be saying that (18th century Shakespeare biographer Edmond) Malone’s failing is this: “It diminishes the power of Shakespeare’s imagination: all his characters are within that imagination.” In other words, Shapiro has brought Stratfordians to another dead end, an equivalent of the genius defense, and a betrayal of their misunderstanding of how literature is created.
View the report and Hunter's entire comment on the SOS blog at: