We had several computer issues while we were out west with the blog site as well as downloading pictures. Here is review of what we did, what we ate and what we saw. They are not in order but maybe in the big scheme of life, it doesn’t matter!
Enjoy or just ignore!!
Another Day in Utah
Beginning at 9:00 a.m. we went to seminars on the plays from the previous day and then we went to the Costume Seminar where we learn about all of the wonderful costumes that are made on site as well acquired from other theaters as well as off the rack. In fact, some years, jackets and suits are bought from Hardwick Clothes. This is the beautiful dress that Cinderella wears in Into the Woods.
Mike and I walked over to a Mexican fast food place near the hotel and got some rolled guacamole tacos to share.
After a time of R&R it was time for supper! We went to Milt’s Steak House where the salad bar is so inviting. We shared a ribeye and a baked potato.
After supper, it was time to go back for the evening’s play and hear from the founder, Fred Adams, who started this wonderful festival 53 years ago. He wears unique tailored shirts along with lots of bling…rings on several fingers and a watch encrusted with diamonds. He gave us a great orientation on Henry IV Part One.
There was thunder and lightning all around as the play began but it wasn’t until 20 before intermission that the rains began to fall. We were fortunate that our seats were out of the rain since the winds were blowing the rain away from us, but those on the first 6 rows got soaked if they didn’t have raingear. Many people got up to find shelter. The House Manager made the decision that the play would be moved indoors and we used our rainstage seat assignments. It made for a much more comfortable 2nd half of the play!
Shakespeare’s first history play, Henry IV Part One, begins with a troubled King Henry IV on the throne of England. He has ascended to the throne by disposing his predecessor, England is being attacked by Scottish forces and is in danger of being defeated, his son Hal is leading the life of a commoner, and his goal of leading a crusade to the Middle E Hal) have defeated the Scots and captured one of the renowned Scottish Generals. This causes King Henry IV to lament that Hal was not upholding his regal obligations of court and military service and instead, spends his time in the company of Sir John Falstaff and the gang of low-lifers at the Boar’s head Tavern. Along the way, Hal joins his low-life friends in a plan to dupe sir John Falstaff and expose him as a liar and a coward. While Hal is enjoying life, Hotspur refuses to turn over to the crown, the spoils from his successful military campaign. Hal pledges to redeem his tarnished reputation by forcing Hotspur to adhere to the king’s wishes. Hotspur, instead, plans to overthrow the crown. Hal leads the king’s forces in defeating the rebels and peace returns to England.
The difference in today’s activities from others was the Actors Seminar in the morning. We had a young man from Australia and a young lady who had her first starring role at the Festival.
For lunch we headed north to Parowan, a small community about 30 minutes away. There we went to the “joint” and enjoyed hamburgers and peach cobbler.
There were interesting tin signs on the walls…
Here are a couple of our favorites…
We didn’t realize that the drug store closed at 6:00 p.m., so we only had 5 minutes to get our ice cream and let them lock up! We ate our delicious evening meal outside on a bench.
We got to the Festival and a kind gentleman took our picture by the Falstaff statue.
The evening’s play was Into The Woods. One of the interesting parts for us was seeing the 2 actors from this morning’s seminar in the play as little red riding hood and the wolf.
We had seen the wolf’s costume at the Costume Seminar so we knew to look for it since we knew how it “worked”.
Into the Woods begins with a montage of familiar fairy tales characters and stories. Cinderella wishes to attend the Prince’s festival (note: festival not ball), but her cruel stepsisters and stepmother are trying to prevent her from attending. Jack of Jack in the Beanstalk must sell his cow, Milky White, to get money so he and his mother can have food to eat. Little Red Riding Hood visits the Baker and his wife to purchase bread to take to her sick grandmother. Rapunzel, with her long hair, is also part of the fairy tale montage. The first act of the play ends with the ending of the fairy tales as you remember them. Everyone is set to “Live happily after. Unfortunately, the second act deals with the fairy tale characters if their lives are altered so that they do not “live happily after.” A witch casts a spell on the Baker and his wife that prevents them from having a child. The witch tells them that they must accomplish three tasks within three days if she is going to remove the spell. During the effort to meet the witche’s demands, The Baker solicits help from Cinderella, Little Red riding Hood, Rapunzel, Cinderella, and other fairy tale characters in the woods. Each fairy tale is altered and intertwined, but most work out but not until each realizes the results of their desired “happily ever afters”
We began the morning with breakfast at the hotel and then off to the literary seminars. The special one today was the Actors Seminar. We had seen these two actors in plays this week.
We chose Thai food for our main meal today. I had a soup made with coconut milk, lemon grass, chicken and spices…very good.
We went back to Bulloch Drug for some ice cream before we went to the evening play.
We saw Comedy of Errors but before we did, we hear Michael Barr, the educational director of the Festival, give a wonderful orientation.
We did some people watching before the play…
This particular version of the play was set during the California Gold Rush of 1849 and the set and costumes reflected that.
Before the play…
The play of the day was The Comedy of Errors. This presentation was not a classical rendition of Shakespeare’s first comedy. Instead of the normal location of Ephesus, this play is staged during the 1849 California gold Rush. It deals with two sets of twins, one born into a wealthy merchant family. The second set of twins, born at the same time as the original one, is soon taken into the care of the merchant family to serve as servants to the original set. During a trip at sea, the ship is lost during a storm, and the twins are separated. 18 years later the merchant is looking for his sons as the plot unfolds. It is a hilarious case of a series of mistaken identities, as servants meet the” wrong” masters, masters beat the “wrong” servants, wives dining with the” wrong” husbands while the right husband is locked out of his house. Add to this a goldsmith who creates a gold necklace that falls into the wrong hands , a courtesan demanding that the chain was promised to her. Add Catholic nuns to the mix, the father of the twins being sentenced to death, and the situation grows more and more bewildering with everyone certain that everyone else is totally mad. Will the situation ever be resolved? Of course it will. This is Shakespeare comedy and everything will work out at the end
Our 5th day found us reuniting with an old friend, Ace Pilkington. He has been the Literary Seminar Director for 27 years, but due to some health concerns, he is only here at the Festival 7 times this summer and we were fortunate enough to have him with us for a wonderful discussion.
After the seminars, we went to the Curtain Call Luncheon where 4 of the company members answered questions from the audience. We had a delicious chicken fajita buffet.
We returned to Bulloch Drug for ice cream…
This is such a unique drugstore. It has a pharmacy, soda fountain, candy aisle, cards, and lots of “stuff”, such as jewelry, knick knacks, scarves, etc. You can see that it was once the Cedar Sheep Association building.
After the orientation for the evening’s plays, we saw Twelfth Night.
Twelfth night, the play for today was not originally named Twelfth night. The original name was What You Will. It was first presented on the 12 night after Christmas and the name stuck. The play opens as Viola finds herself stranded in Ilyria after a shipwreck and assumes her twin brother drowned .She disguises herself as a man, Cesario, and enters the service of Duke Orsino, who is in love with Olivia. The duke is madly in love with Olivia. He sends Viola/Cesario to woo Oliviain his behalf. Orsino does not realize that Viola has fallen madly in love with him. Olivia is in the midst of a seven year mourning period for a dead brother and father and is refusing the advances of any man. . Most are unhappy that she is in mourning, but one servant, Malvolio finds morbid pleasure in the fact that she is sad and the other servants are unhappy. Her sorrow is not so profound, however, as to keep her from falling in love with the disguised Viola. To show her love she sends Viola a ring and invites her to return. The play revolves comically around these two love affairs and the members of Oliva’s household as they deal with Oliva’s mourning. Meanwhile, Viola’s brother Sebastian, unaware that Viola is still alive, arrives in Ilyra in the company of an outlaw sea captain, Antonio. After some mix up encounters where Sebastian and Viola are believed to be the other twin, they are seen at last side by side and Viola assumes her maidenhood. Orsino, remembering Viola’s many expressions of affection, is content to abandon his hopeless love for Olivia and marry Viola .
The play today was Sense and Sensibility, A new stage adaption of the book by British 19th century author Jane Austen. As the play opens, Henry Dashwood dies and in accord with British custom and law, leaves his substantial wealth to his oldest son of his first marriage, John Dashwood .This leaves his second wife, Margaret, and her daughters, Elinor and Marianne, without a home and little income. John had promised his father that he would “take care” of his stepmother and step sisters. Under pressure from his wife, Fanny, John reneges on the promise he made to his father, and gives them no part of his father’s estate. Margaret and her two daughters are forced to move into a small cottage on the grounds of a distant cousin’s estate. This sets the stage for the daughters to meet potential suitors, fall in love, get their hearts broken and then mended. Along the way, the audience is introduced to neighbors, relatives, and competitors vying for the girls favors. In the end, both daughters find happiness and husbands and the story ends on a note of exhilarated joy.