American Shakespeare Center Free Performances

The American Shakespeare Center will be performing two plays at the Bama Theatre in downtown Tuscaloosa. On Friday, February 10, the ASC will perform The Two Gentlemen of Verona. On Saturday, February 11, 2017, the ASC will perform Romeo and Juliet. Pre-show music begins at 7:00 pm and the play begins at 7:30 pm each evening. Sponsored by the Hudson Strode Program in Renaissance Studies, both plays are free and open to the public. Seats will be available on a first-come, first-served basis.

When long-distance love tangles the heartstrings of the play's title characters, it takes two clever women, a pair of devoted servants, and a dog to make things right. Shakespeare tries out some of his most popular ideas for the first time in this early comedy. Jealous lovers, a cross-dressing heroine, and a daring escape into the forest make The Two Gentlemen of Verona simultaneously a familiar and completely refreshing trip. (Download PDF of poster.)

With its ravishing language and uproarious comedy, Romeo and Juliet celebrates love's triumph and its trivialities. Verona's walls embrace the volatility of youth as well as the wisdom and restraint that often escape young and old alike. Thumb-biting, dance, and swordplay share the stage with sonnets, bawdy wit, and soul-searching speeches in this profoundly human and always surprising treasure. (Download PDF of poster.)

Since 1988, the American Shakespeare Center has toured the country with shows incorporating Shakespeare’s staging conditions. Based out of Staunton, VA, the company mission is to recover the joys and accessibility of Shakespeare’s theatre, language, and humanity by exploring the English Renaissance stage and its practices through performance and education. The ASC’s Blackfriars Playhouse, the world’s only re-creation of Shakespeare’s indoor theatre, is open year-round for productions of classic plays, which have been hailed by The Washington Post as "shamelessly entertaining" and by The Boston Globe as "phenomenal … bursting with energy." Founded in 1988 as Shenandoah Shakespeare Express, the organization became the American Shakespeare Center in 2005 and can be found online at www.americanshakespearecenter.com .

The Hudson Strode Program in Renaissance Studies is a privately endowed program at the University of Alabama that promotes the study of English literature from Skelton to Milton. The endowment provides for lectures and residencies by distinguished scholars and fellowships for graduate study in the field of English Renaissance Literature. The Program also sponsors several community initiatives aimed at fostering engagement with Renaissance studies in the Tuscaloosa area.  These include the Shakespeare Film Series presented at the Bama Theatre in downtown Tuscaloosa and Improbable Fictions, a company that performs staged readings of Shakespeare’s plays, as well as the works of other classical and contemporary dramatists.