Featuring Theodore Bikel
May 13-15, 2007
Also featuring Edward Gero, Stephanie Burden, Catherine Flye, Tim Getman, John Lescault, Karen Novack, Andrew Pecoraro, Joel Snyder, Christopher Michael Todd and Simone Zvi
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Set in the Jewish Ghetto of Venice in 1563, the play focuses on the tragic consequences of an absurd contract made between Shylock (Theodore Bikel), a successful loan-banker and pillar in the Venetian Jewish community, and his good friend Antonio (Ed Gero), a non-Jewish merchant. Antonio’s long-forgotten godson, Bassanio (Tim Getman), seeks him out to borrow 3000 ducats for the wooing of the heiress Portia (Stephanie Burden). Antonio must borrow the money from his friend, who unhesitatingly agrees but is offended when Antonio asks for a contract, a requirement for Venetians who deal with Jews.
The moneylender and his friend agree to a contract that mocks the Venetian law: His friend will provide a pound of his own flesh if he fails to pay the debt in three months time. When Antonio loses his fortune, however, Shylock’s seemingly trivial act of defiance threatens his friendship and he is faced with the choice of saving his friend or protecting the Jewish community from disgrace. His pride also distances him from his daughter Jessica (Simone Zvi) who runs off with Bassanio’s friend Lorenzo Pisani (Andrew Pecoraro).
This three-day festival will also include a May 13 Artistic Director's Roundtable on Shylock under the Reich (following a performance of Either, Or) Additional programming includes a reading of Michael Olmert's Shakespeare and Dr. Lopez and a lecture by Dr. Grace Tiffany, cosponsored by the Jewish Historical Society (click here for more info).
Additional Programming for SHYLOCK
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Visit Arnold Wesker's Web site
More Links on Shylock: Visit All About Jewish Theatre