U.S. Premiere of Merry Wives of Windsor by London's Legendary Shakespeare's Globe Theatre at The Broad Stage

Friday, October 15 - Sunday, October 24

Exclusive Partnerships include Loews Santa Monica Beach Hotel, and Los Angeles Magazine.

Oct 15, 2010, 10:00 ET from The Broad Stage

SANTA MONICA, Calif., Oct. 15 /PRNewswire/ -- Following their heralded tour of Love's Labour's Lost in 2009, the venerable Shakespeare's Globe Theatre of London returns to Los Angeles from October 15th – through October 24th, with the triumphant U.S. premiere production of William Shakespeare's Merry Wives of Windsor, presented by The Broad Stage and directed by Christopher Luscombe.  Luscombe completely reconfigured and re-imagined this production specifically for The Broad Stage.

This is the second appearance at The Broad Stage for Shakespeare's Globe under the artistic leadership of Dominic Dromgoole. Shakespeare's Globe's heralded 2008 production of Merry Wives of Windsor, directed by Christopher Luscombe re-opened in London August 19th, 2010 and will tour to New York's Pace University following The Broad Stage, October 28thNovember 7th.

With its physical gags, linguistic jokes and vivid characters, Merry Wives of Windsor celebrates the foundations of the modern TV sitcom.  Director Christopher, once a Shakespeare comic actor himself, takes full advantage of this witty and affable play, directing a production full of irresistible charm – complimented by vibrant designs from Janet Bird and a jaunty score from composer Nigel Hess.

Merry Wives of Windsor was the hit of Shakespeare Globes 2008 season. The Evening Standard exclaimed, "Good Queen Bess herself would surely have beamed at this delightful take on that royal command script, quite the best and freshest work I've seen at the Globe." The Times of London heralded, "A wonderfully warm comedy, stuffed with belly laughs. Making broad Shakespearean comedy funny for a 21st century audience often feels a stretch.  But in his hectically paced, sitcom-inspired production of Merry Wives, Christopher Luscombe succeeds triumphantly."

This remounting of its 2008 production again features Christopher Benjamin as Falstaff, Serena Evans as Mistress Page, Sarah Woodward Mistress Ford and Andrew Havill as Frank Ford.  Joining them in the Globe company are Michael Garner, Paul Woodson, Gegory Gudgeon, Ceri-Lyn Cissone, Philip Bird, Sue Wallace Barnaby Edwards, Peter Gale, William Belchambers, Nathan Amzi, Gareth Armstrong, Jonty Stephens, Gerald McCarthy and students from Santa Monica Playhouse as Falstaff's page, fairies and sprites.

Directed by Christopher Luscombe, this production has designs by Janet Bird, choreography by Jenny Arnold, lighting by Jason Taylor and music by Nigel Hess. Merry Wives of Windsor will employ a rotating stage with renaissance costume and music.  

Shakespeare's Globe Theatre was founded by the late and pioneering American actor/director Sam Wanamaker, who persevered for nearly 30 years to rebuild a replica of the Globe near its original site in London. Since the Globe's reopening by Her Majesty the Queen in 1997, the theatre has fulfilled its vision of recreating for audiences the infectious energy and spontaneity of Shakespeare plays as they were originally presented in an urban amphitheater.

About The Broad Stage:

Under the leadership of Director Dale Franzen and Artistic Chair Dustin Hoffman, The Eli and Edythe Broad Stage at the Santa Monica College Performing Arts Center opened its doors in Santa Monica in October 2008. Inspired by Italian "horseshoe" theaters, yet conceived in an absolutely contemporary vernacular, The Broad Stage is an artist's dream and an audience's delight. Unlike any performance space in the country, it is sublimely intimate with 499-seats and strikingly grand at the same time – allowing eye contact with artists from the boxes to the back row –forging a new kind of artist and audience experience in Los Angeles. Theater, dance, film, operas, musicals, symphony and chamber orchestras will be presented on one of the city's largest proscenium stages. Designed without compromise to embrace the artistic process from inspiration to opening night, and conceived as a global theater and community hub. In addition to The Broad Stage, The Edye , a smaller black box theater, presents new, developing and innovative work in theater, music and dance as part of the Under the Radar Series. Featuring younger, innovative artists and chamber pieces and plays, programming at The Edye is intentionally spontaneous, reflecting the dynamic nature of the space and allowing the latest, most exciting artists to be booked on short notice. The Under the Radar Series is only $20. Visit The Broad Stage online at www.TheBroadStage.com.

Friday, October 15th through Sunday, October 24, 2010

Friday, October 15, 7:30 pm – Opening Night
Saturday, October 16, 2:00 pm and 7:30 pm
Monday, October 18, 7:30 pm
Wednesday, October 20, 7:30 pm
Thursday, October 21, 7:30 pm
Friday, October 22, 2:00 pm and 7:30 pm
Saturday, October 23, 2:00 pm and 7:30 pm
Sunday, October 24, 2:00 pm

Tickets: Start at $47 and are available online at www.TheBroadStage.com, or 310.434.3200. The Broad Stage is located at 1310 11th Street, Santa Monica, CA  90401. Parking is free. The Broad Stage season runs from October 2010 through May 21, 2011.

Vanessa Butler, 213-446-0774

SOURCE The Broad Stage