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LA's Historic Outdoor Theater Will Geer's Theatricum Botanicum Returns With 4 Plays In Repertory This Summer

A woman embraces a man on stage at the Theatricum Botanicum
(Ian Flanders/Courtesy of Will Geer's Theatricum Botanicum)
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Announcing the Will Geer's Theatricum Botanicum 2022 Repertory Season, sponsored by the S. Mark Taper Foundation. Best known for presenting lively and engaging renditions of the works of William Shakespeare, Theatricum will open the season with two of the Bard’s buoyant comedies: The Merry Wives of Windsor, opening June 11 and directed by Ellen Geer, along with the company’s annual, signature production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream, opening June 12 and directed by Melora Marshall. Set to a rockin’ score of ’50s tunes, Merry Wives has been re-set in 1950s small-town America during the nascent period of second-wave feminism. A Midsummer Night’s Dream remains a perennial favorite at Theatricum, where the set design remains unrivaled by any other theater — because it’s the real thing. What better place to delight as fairies cavort than in the heart of the Topanga woods on a true midsummer eve?

Joining the repertoire on June 25 is a spanking “new” revival. Forty-one years after The West Side Waltz premiered at the Ahmanson Theatre, Academy Award-winning writer Ernest Thompson (On Golden Pond) has deconstructed his script for a new production directed by Mary Jo DuPrey. In the world premiere of Thompson’s newly revised, heart-filled dramedy set during the tumultuous ’80s, Theatricum artistic director Ellen Geer; her sister, Melora Marshall; and daughter Willow Geer take on the roles of an aging concert pianist, her violin-playing spinster neighbor, and a would-be actress on New York’s Upper West Side.

Finally, the world premiere of Trouble the Water opens on July 9 and is directed by Gerald C. Rivers. Inspired by the real-life story of Robert Smalls, who escaped slavery to become an American hero, Trouble the Water navigates the rich tributaries of courage, betrayal and redemption in a script freely adapted by Ellen Geer from the 2019 award-winning historical novel by Rebecca Dwight Bruff.

Get tickets at www.theatricum.com.