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Taking Shakespeare

The first new play in a dozen years from Canadian dramatist, translator, and librettist John Murrell, Taking Shakespeare is the eccentric and compassionate story of an extremely unlikely threesome:

Prof is sixty-seven years old, stuck in a job he hates at a small university where he has remained for far too long. The only universe in which he travels happily is literature. His only close friend is William Shakespeare.

Murph is twenty-four years old, out of focus, lost in his life. He's never traveled anywhere happily, and he's never had a really close friend.

William Shakespeare is four hundred and fifty years old, an icon of art and humanity, with hundreds of millions of admirers and students, and with friends everywhere.

Shakespeare is the agent who brings Murph and Prof together, introduces them, and propels them through a few explosive tutoring sessions that will shake up both their lives forever. Through real-life comedy, real-life tragedy, and an intense hunger for human understanding -- above all, through Shakespeare's powerful realities -- Murph and Prof will transcend the borders of age, education, and isolation, to discover connections, disconnections, needs, and consolations which all three of them share with the rest of us.

2012 Part of the 26th High Performance Rodeo, Big Secret Theatre, Calgary, Canada
Featuring Denise Clarke and John Murrell  •  Written by John Murrell  •  Directed by Blake Brooker
Lighting Design by Sandi Somers  •  Set and Costume Design by Fiona Kennedy  •  Sound Design by Richard McDowell  •  Stage Manager Oliver Armstrong  •  Associate Producer Mark Hopkins

Also Featuring:

John Murrell

John Murrell is among Canada’s most frequently produced playwrights, whose plays – including Waiting For The Parade, Memoir, Farther West, and Taking Shakespeare – have been performed in more than 30 countries around the world.  He is also a translator, the author of four opera libretti, an arts activist, mentor, and consultant.  Murrell is an Officer of the Order of Canada, a member of the Alberta Order of Excellence, and a recipient of the Governor General’s Performing Arts Award for Lifetime Artistic Achievement.  One Yellow Rabbit’s premiere production of his play Death In New Orleans won a prestigious Fringe First Award at the Edinburgh International Arts Festival.