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University Theatre to open summer season

May 22, 2001

University Summer Theatre opens its season in June with “The Boys from Syracuse” at UW–Madison.

Two other productions also are planned: “Master Harold … and the boys” by Athol Fugard, and “Stop Kiss,” by Diana Son. Tickets for each show now are on sale, and a season ticket for all three summer shows costs $30.

Directed by John Staniunas, “The Boys from Syracuse” will be staged June 28-Aug. 4 in Hemsley Theatre, Vilas Hall, 821 University Ave.

The madcap musical of mistaken identities is based upon Shakespeare’s “Comedy of Errors.” Two boys from Syracuse, Antipholus and his servant Dromio, are searching for their long lost twins (who also just happen to be named Antipholus and Dromio). The twins they seek live in the city of Ephesus, and when the Syracuse boys arrive there, they are mistaken for their brothers and chaos ensues.

Unwitting wives try to seduce their brothers-in-law, innocent men get arrested, and both Dromios repeatedly get punished for things they didn’t do. This classic comedy promises a night of slapstick fun.

The show will be presented in a cabaret setting that lets audience members enjoy a drink and popcorn with the show. Tickets: $16 ($13 for UW–Madison students).

“Master Harold … and the boys,” directed by Barbara Clayton, runs July 6-20 in Mitchell Theatre. In this autobiographical play, white South African playwright Athol Fugard recreates an incident from his own youth when his inherited racism burst forth in an act of cruelty.

The play is set in the 1950s in South Africa, within a decade after the introduction of apartheid. Hally, a 17 year-old white boy, is angry and anxious about the imminent return of his estranged, alcoholic father. In a viciously racist moment, Hally takes out his frustration on his lifelong friends Sam and Willie, two black employees of his parents.

Tickets: $12 ($9 for UW–Madison students).

“Stop Kiss,” directed by Paul Dennhardt, runs July 26-Aug. 4 in Mitchell Theatre. The play tells the story of Sara, an idealistic teacher from St. Louis who has just moved to New York City to work in an underprivileged school. When she meets Callie, a longtime New Yorker, the two become instant friends. As Callie helps Sara adjust to life in the City, their relationship deepens.

In a moment of trust and discovery, they kiss; but this act of tenderness prompts an attack by a homophobic psychopath, which leaves Sara in critical condition. Growth, healing, friendship and love intertwine to create an unforgettable relationship between these two young women.

Tickets: $12 ($9 for UW–Madison students). For tickets and more information about University Theatre, contact the Vilas Hall Box Office, (608) 262-1500.

Tags: arts