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Shakespeare's R&J by Joe Calarco, directed by Tristan Brandon

Out There

In a parochial school any of us might have attended, in a time in which any of us might have lived, four students find an immortal story to transport them out of the stricture and drudgery of their schooldays, as their nights become the stage on which they decide to perform for each other–with each other–the seminal story of love in the face of authority. Barriers melt away as they each discover for themselves a character, and then a reason for that character to be heard.

We all know the story–it’s everyone’s story. Romeo and Juliet has endured 400 and more years because it’s a story about love; in fact, it’s about that rarest of all things: first love. When you first read or saw Shakespeare’s immortal story about young lovers who insist on each other against all odds–who were you? Which character could you see in yourself? When did it occur to you that what they were feeling–that hopeless, fantastic, elevating, crushing madness could be yours too, and led you to wonder: what would I do?

 

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