As You Like It
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Director Ellen Geer moves the tale of two sets of brothers — one alienated by ambition, the other estranged by envy — to the divided South of the post-Civil War era, adding traditional American folk music and dance from the period. Rosalind is forced to flee camp when her uncle Frederick, usurper of his brother’s position as a general in the Union army, threatens to have her killed. Accompanied by her cousin Celia, Rosalind disguises herself as a man for safety’s sake. The disguise comes in handy when she tests the devotion of her noble admirer, Orlando, on the run from his hostile older brother. Meanwhile, the rebel camp is alive with music — banjo, guitar, ukulele, mandolin and more. With Rosalind’s wit leading the way, the forces of true love, justice and song eventually triumph.
“Re-setting the play just after the Civil War enlarges the scope,” say Ellen Geer. “It heightens the point about brothers being pitted against brothers, and takes us to a deeper level.”
Theatricum Botanicum has been named “One of the 50 Coolest Places in Los Angeles” by Buzz magazine, “One of Southern California’s most beguiling theater experiences” by Sunset magazine, and “Best Theater in the Woods” by the LA Weekly. “The enchantment of a midsummer night at Theatricum Botanicum [makes it] crystal clear why audiences have been driving up into the hills since Theatricum’s maiden season way back in 1973. Summer Shakespeare doesn’t get any better than this,” writes StageSceneLA. Says Los Angeles magazine, “The amphitheater feels like a Lilliputian Hollywood Bowl, with pre-show picnics and puffy seat cushions, yet we were close enough to see the stitching on the performers costumes. Grab a blanket and a bottle and head for the hills.”
As You Like It opens on Sunday, June 7 at 3:30 p.m. and continues through Sept. 26. Tickets range from $10-$39.50; children 6 and under are free. Will Geer’s Theatricum Botanicum is located at 1419 North Topanga Canyon Blvd. in Topanga, midway between Malibu and the San Fernando Valley. For a complete schedule of performances and to purchase tickets, call 310-455-3723 or log onto www.theatricum.com. Visit Theatricum on facebook: www.facebook.com/theatricum. Follow us on twitter: @theatricum.