The Tempest at the South Coast Rep

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

photo by South Coast Rep
Oh my.  I’ve never seen Shakespeare quite like this.

I was a communications minor at University and all through my Junior and Senior years as part of my course work, I had to attend half a dozen performances per semester. Student rush tickets are amazing. I took my boyfriend to plays and operas and musicals and everything in between. And I saw a ton of Shakespeare: professional companies all the way down to college troupes.

But the South Coast Rep’s current iteration of The Tempest, not unlike the famed storm itself, is a force to be reckoned with.

With an intriguing small group acting as the music and “Rough Magic” including music by Kathleen Brennan and Tom Waits (right, I know!) and a magical element with acts designed by Teller (of Penn and Teller) I promise you’ve not seen anything like it. 

An amazing physical acting duo played Caliban (I found it difficult to look away from Zachary Eisenstat and Manelich Minniefee) and a magician in his own right played the part of Ariel (Nate Dendy). Prospero (Tom Nelis) levitated Miranda (Charlotte Graham) briefly during her and Ferdinand’s (Joby Earle) wedding and Trinculo’s musical and comical prowess was impressive (Jonathan M. Kim).

The script was true to Shakespeare but the dress and set design was decidedly Victorian in nature. Glowing café lights reminded me of gas lamps and behind a thin curtain, the actors at times, moved through shadow and light plays.

I honestly can’t say anything bad about The Tempest at all. And because at the SCR every seat is a good one, one can’t go wrong. 

Local Tip:
You can get specially priced tickets today only for $40. Use code 10676 at checkout (not an affiliate link) for performances this weekend only!

The Tempest is playing currently and still has many tickets available for the next few weeks. Click here to find tickets and don’t beafraid to buy the “cheaper” ones. Like I said, no seat is bad in this intimate venue.

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