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William Shakespeare’s plays weren’t always a labor for high school students; his plays were written for the masses, often with striking political commentary and uproarious physical comedy. In a new production of his Richard III, the murderous, hunchbacked king is both frightening and funny.

UofL’s Department of Theatre Arts’ production will be performed October 5-9 at 8 p.m. nightly, along with a 3 p.m. matinee on October 9. Under the direction of department chair Rinda Frye, the play will be abridged to nearly half of the original four-hour length. (Richard III nearly is the Bard’s longest play, second only to Hamlet.) However, Frye assures theatergoers that all that people love to hate about Richard is still there—along with some new things to discover. “The play has some of the strongest and best written women’s roles in all of Shakespeare’s plays,” she says. “I’ve kept most of these scenes to provide a balance for the more masculine scenes of war and mayhem and to provide a stronger context for Richard’s shenanigans.

“Usually portrayed as the icon of consummate evil, I’ve always seen Richard as a comic villain,” Frye adds. 

All performances will be at the Thrust Theater, 2314 S. Floyd St. Show tickets are $12 for the general public, $10 for faculty and staff and $8 for students and senior citizens. Season tickets are still available and cost $60 for the general public, $50 for faculty, staff and those aged 65 and over, and $40 for students.
 
For tickets and information, call 852-6814 or visit http://louisville.edu/theatrearts/.

Photo: Courtesy University of Louisville

Contact the author at [email protected] or www.leecopywriting.com.

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