Friday, July 24, 2009

A Rainy Shrew

The rain, which held off all day, came down in sheets as the audience arrived for Thursday's performance of ArtFarm's Taming of the Shrew, relegating the performance to the completely drama-less confines of the all-purpose room in the Middlesex Community College library.

Once the actors hit the boards (or in this case, the industrial carpet), the all-purpose room was transformed into 15th century Italy, as the Shakespeare in the Grove players made the audience forget they were sitting in a room designed for utility and not for drama.

ArtFarm's unique take on Shakespeare's comedy was so physical that one could imagine it was closer to the WWF, then the Globe Theater. The animalistic representation of characters, led by the wild feline growls of Marcella Trowbridge's Kate, made the Italiantate romance a curious menagerie of primates, felines and fowl.

The show was opened with a magical performance debut by the duo of Rani Arbo and Mark Erelli. Both strong performers in their own right, Arbo and Erelli presented duets crafted from their own songbooks, and borrowed from country classics and folk traditionals.

The Taming of the Shrew will be presented Friday, Saturday and Sunday evenings at Middlesex Community College, beginning at 6 PM.

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