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Cleveland's Classic Company at the Hanna Theatre presents Shakespeare's Uproarious Battle of the Sexes THE TAMING OF THE SHREW

The production features an Elizabethan theater-inspired design concept and an immersive onstage seating experience for audiences.   CLEVELAND, OH - Great Lakes Theater (GLT), Cleveland’s Classic Company, continues the second half its 57th season with Shakespeare’s uproarious battle of the sexes, The Taming of the Shrew. The production will be performed in the company’s intimate and audience-friendly home at the Hanna Theatre, Playhouse Square, March 29 – April 14, 2019. Sara Bruner, longtime GLT artistic company member who played the role of Kate in the 2011 GLT production of The Taming of the Shrew, directs. GLT’s upcoming production of The Taming of the Shrew features actor Jessika Williams in the show’s title role. Generous support for The Taming of the Shrew was provided by Shakespeare in American Communities (a national program of the National Endowment for the Arts in partnership with Arts Midwest)Great Lakes Theater is one of 40 professional theater companies selected to participate in bringing the finest productions of Shakespeare to middle and high school students in communities across the United States. Great Lakes Theater is also supported in part by the residents of Cuyahoga County through a public grant from Cuyahoga Arts & Culture. Season support is provided by The Cleveland Foundation and the Ohio Arts Council. Media sponsors for GLT’s 57th season are The FORM Group, and ideastream. The production’s innovative design concept will, once again, transform the Hanna Theatre into an Elizabethan-style theater that incorporates onstage seating sections that surround the playing area and create an immersive experience for audiences. For this production, the seating sections will include the padded benches with backs similar in style to church pews that were used previously in GLT productions of Macbeth and Hamlet and will incorporate a few new onstage seating options. Onstage seating for Shrew will include café-style tables and chairs on the stage’s playing area and seating in the upper, second-story tier of the set which will provide unique new perspectives for audience members. All seating will be assigned. This is the first time this immersive setting has been used for a Shakespearean comedy.   In Shakespeare’s uproarious battle of the sexes, The Taming of the Shrew, the only thing that stands between Bianca and a bevy of eligible suitors is her quick-tempered, elder sister Katherina. That is until fortune-hunting Petruchio takes up the challenge to “tame” Kate and make her his wife. A madcap marriage and much mayhem ensues in a beguiling battle of wits and wills between the sexes which ultimately reveals an unlikely romance. Can love tame a shrewish heart and surprise an unbridled bachelor? Great Lakes Theater’s acclaimed home at the Hanna Theatre features a visionary “Great Room” inspired design that integrates the artist and audience experience into a single unified environment. Hanna patrons select from a variety of seating opportunities including traditional theater seats, club chairs, lounge/bar seats, banquette couches and private box seating. Arranged in an intimate 550-seat thrust configuration where the audience surrounds the stage, no seat is further than 12 rows from the performance. Great Lakes Theater offers patrons a robust series of Experience Enhancement Programming that is organized by day of week. The series highlights the Hanna’s unique amenities and affords access to artists. ·         “Director’s Night” offers audiences the opportunity to take part in a lively pre-show discussion with Sara Bruner before the Friday preview performance. (Offered: Mar. 29) ·         “Salon Thursdays” feature an engaging pre-show discussion/presentation beginning one hour before curtain with The Taming of the Shrew artists. (Offered: Apr. 4, 11) ·         “Playnotes Pre-Show Discussions” inform patrons with illuminating introductions to the content and history of each play in GLT’s season presented by a guest scholar before Saturday matinee performances. (Offered: Mar. 30 & Apr. 6, 13) ·         “Ice Cream Social Sundays” offer patrons the opportunity to enjoy a London theatre tradition brought state-side. Audience members are invited to purchase a cool, personal ice cream treat before the show or at intermission. Ice cream will be offered at every performance in Deathtrap’s run, but on “Ice Cream Social Sundays,” the treat is half price. (Offered: Mar. 31 & Apr. 7, 14) Great Lakes Theater will continue to afford patrons extraordinary access to its artists and production process at every Hanna Theatre performance of The Taming of the Shrew. The Hanna always opens its doors sixty minutes before each performance allowing patrons to observe the complete pre-show preparation process of GLT’s actors and technical staff. Elements traditionally hidden from audiences such as stage combat rehearsals, dance calls, prop/scenic pre-sets, technical cue rehearsals and actor warm-ups will be conducted in full view of patrons, offering GLT audiences an unprecedented glimpse into the theatrical process. Great Lakes Theater will also renew its New Deal pricing initiative this spring - designed to maximize accessibility for audiences. As part of the program, adult tickets begin at $15 and student tickets for any seat at any performance are $13 - making GLT one of the most affordable entertainment options in the region. The Taming of the Shrew’s onstage seating section tickets are available for $25 each. Student ticket pricing also applies to these seating sections. Curtain times for all evening performances will remain at 7:30 p.m., with a 1:30 p.m. curtain time for Saturday matinees and a 3:00 p.m. curtain time for Sunday matinees. A sign-interpreted and audio-described performance of the production will be offered on Sunday, April 14th at 3:00 p.m. Single performance tickets range in price from $15-$80 (Student tickets are $13) and are available by calling (216) 241-6000, by ordering online at www.GreaLakesTheater.org or by visiting the Playhouse Square Ticket Office. Groups of ten or more receive discounts of up to 25% by calling (216) 453-4457. Great Lakes Theater, the first resident company of Playhouse Square, has brought the pleasure, power and relevance of classic theater to the widest possible audience since 1962. On its main stage and through its extensive education programming, Great Lakes Theater positively impacts the lives of over 100,000 adults and students annually.   #         #         #   Media Contact: Kacey Shapiro Marketing and Communications Manager (216) 453-1068 kshapiro@greatlakestheater.org

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