Thanks to the Chicago Tribune‘s Rick Kogan for a relaxed and gracious interview on WGN Radio. You can listen here. Of course the whole show is fascinating, but if you’re in a hurry the Much Ado segment starts at about 17:00.
In late summer 2013, when David Frank knew for sure he would be directing Much Ado, he didn’t have to think about who would be his Beatrice: Colleen Madden would. She is one of the company’s stars, a small woman with a big voice, an extraordinary actress. I saw her take Benedick’s arm in playful surrender to their newly blossomed love, and moments later I watched enraptured as he knelt before her and asked, “How doth your cousin?” more
I was interviewed by Veronica Rueckert and Rob Ferrett of Wisconsin Public Radio’s Central Time. We talked about the book, APT, and the creation of the play’s magic moment. Listen here.
Back in the days when whimsy was thought to be a desirable quality for internet addresses, APT’s website was playinthewoods.org. The woods, and trekking through them from the parking lot to the “Up the Hill” stage, have always been an important part of the company’s identity. And despite its unlikely location just south of Spring Green, Wisconsin, population 1,628, APT ranks among the country’s elite classical theater companies, with an annual budget of about $6 million and ticket sales of more than 100,000 each season.
The company was founded in 1979 by a small group of big thinkers more
Out in the woods, a trumpet sounds. Then sounds again, louder and closer. Up on the bridge that looms over center stage, young Hero appears in a pouffy peach dress. She looks off toward the sound as though she is waiting for something. Could this be it? Music begins—an oboe line floating prettily over a bed of nervous strings. Behind Hero comes her cousin Beatrice in a simple wine-red dress. Older and wiser, she gazes with amusement at her agitated cousin as a servant enters from the wings stage left. He looks up at Hero with a question in his eyes: where is her father Leonato? more
…or at least in one of our favorite stores, Arcadia Books in Spring Green. John Christensen, the manager there, says his shipment has arrived and he’ll start selling today, September 23. If you’re not close enough to stop in, order from Arcadia and get free shipping with the code freeship16.
The book should be available at your favorite indie too, if they ordered any. If they didn’t, ask them why the hell not and pester them till they do!
Much Ado has been reviewed by Kirkus Reviews, whose writer astutely observes that it “shows us with rare clarity how a professional company prepares a production.” Conclusion: the book is “A series of bright, clear photographs of what the author saw when he pulled aside the curtain in a Wisconsin Oz.” Read the whole thing here.