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A presentation about the history and structure of the Alabama Shakespeare Festival in Montgomery, Alamaba

Jacob Henry

on 27 April 2010

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Transcript of Alabama

Alabama Shakespeare Festival History
In 1972, the founding artistic director, Martin Platt, had a vision about starting the Alabama Shakespeare Festival. He borrowed $500 from his mother and started rehearsals for Hamlet in the Anniston High School gym.

The first show opened in the summer of 1972 for an audience of two, a critic and his wife. The critic considered the performance very poor and predicted that the Alabama Shakespeare Festival would not survive.

In 1972 the Alabama Shakespeare festival became a summer theatre festival. Plays ran for six weeks during summer months. The festival faced bankruptcy in the early 1980s. Board Member Carolyn Blount and her husband Wynton Blount agreed to build a new home for the Alabama Shakespeare Festival. As the result of Mr. and Mrs. Winton Blount's $21.5-million gift, a new performing-arts complex was built on a 250-acre landscaped park in Montgomery Alabama. In December 1985, Mr. Blount christened the performing arts complex "The Carolyn Blount Theatre". When it moved to Montgomery, the Alabama Shakespeare Festival began year-round operations with more than 400 performances scheduled each year.
The Alabama Shakespeare Festival Guild formed in 1973 to provide volunteer staff and services for the festival. It also provided a dedicated board of directors, who oversaw marketing and business affairs Between 1972 and 1975, the Alabama Shakespeare Festival was staffed with volunteer actors and produced plays by such famous playwrights as Shakespeare, Ibsen, Moliere, and Machiavelli. The Theatres The Carolyn Blount Theatre houses two theatres—the 750-seat Festival Stage and the 225-seat Octagon—as well as production shops, a costume shop, dressing rooms, rehearsal halls, and administrative work spaces. Let's talk about the company! The Alabama Shakespeare Festival is one of the largest Shakespeare festival in the world. Each year, it attracts more than 300,000 visitors from throughout the United States and more than 60 countries It is a LORT C, D size regional theatre The company is lead by Geoffrey Sherman, the Producing Artistic Director and Young Boozer III, Board Chair The Alabama Shakespeare Festival operates year-round, producing 14 productions annually, including three works of William Shakespeare. What else do they do?? In 1991, the Alabama Shakespeare Festival created the Southern Writers' Project. Southern Writers Project serves as an outlet for works by southern playwrights focusing on themes concerning the South’s heritage.
The program is dedicated to creating a voice for southern writers. The Alabama Shakespeare Festival produces a selection of these plays each year through Southern Writers Project. The Alabama Shakespeare Festival also offers a number of educational programs and events for the public. Students at the University of Alabama can participate in the Professional Actor Training Program and complete graduate work in areas of costume design and production, set design, and theatre management and arts administration. Programs for children and schools include SchoolFest, a student program that provides discounted tickets to an average of 35,000 schoolchildren from the Southeast.
Thank You! By: Jacob Henry and Ryan Ramon
What's playing now?? Hamlet
By William Shakespeare
April 16 - May 22, 2010 Lettice & Lovage
by Peter Shaffer
April 9 - May 22, 2010 All's Well That Ends Well
By William Shakespeare
April 23 - May 22, 2010 Cowgirls
by Betsy Howe with Music & Lyrics by Mary Murfitt
June 11 - June 27, 2010

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