Penn Quarter, We Love Arts

We Love Arts: Twelfth Night

Images courtesy the Shakespeare Theater Company

Images courtesy of the Shakespeare Theater Company

The biggest complaint I have with STC’s production of Twelfth Night has nothing to do with the actual production they put on, so I’m going to just get it out of the way here and move on to praising them. Why in the name of all that’s holy wasn’t this the production they chose to do an all-male version of, rather than Romeo and Juliet? Here’s a story that contains gender-bending, and an (albeit brief) moment of a character confronted with the confusion of feeling romantic love for someone he believes to be his own gender. There’s interesting ground to cover there, as opposed to stunt casting that does little more than say “hey, check out how they used to do it four centuries ago!”

The only problem with that idea is that if I’d been at that production I wouldn’t have gotten to enjoy this one. The actors are all excellent, the set is beautiful, and Director Rebecca Taichman manages a flow and rhythm that pulls you along enjoyably. There’s one odd choice in the second half that took me out of the moment a few times, but it comes and goes quickly enough. There’s only one aspect that stands out notably and delightfully so. Continue reading