Great actors at Cal Shakes

Casts and creative teams for the first two Cal Shakes shows have been announced, and it looks like it’s shaping up to be another hot summer in the chilly environs of the Bruns Amphitheater in the bucolic Orinda hills.

The 24th season opens May 28 with Shakespeare’s Pericles, directed by Minneapolis-based director Joel Sass in his Cal Shakes debut. The play is being done as an ensemble piece, with eight actors playing multiple roles. Embattled Pericles, Prince of Tyre will be portrayed by Christopher Kelly, a newcomer to Cal Shakes and a five-year resident at the Denver Center Theatre Company. Delia MacDougall, who appeared last season in Man and Superman and King Lear, returns as This/Bawd and Danny Scheie (Arlecchino in The Triumph of Love) portrays Helicanus/Simonides/Boult.

Shawn Hamilton, who appeared in Sass’ Guthrie Theater production of Pericles, will reprise his roles as Gower, Lychorida, and Diana. Associate artist and Fox Fellowship awardee Ron Campbell and associate artist Domenique Lozano, (co-stars in last summer’s The Triumph of Love, play Antiochos/Cleon and Dionysia/Cerimon, respectively; and Sarah Nealis (Cordelia in last season’s Lear) plays Marina/Antiochus’ Daughter. Finally, newcomer and recent ACT MFA grad Alex Morf (Act’s The Rainmaker) is Lysimachus/Thailand/Leonine.

The creative team includes Melpomene Katakalos (Set Designer); Raquel M. Barreto (Costume Designer); Russell H. Champa (Lighting Designer); Greg Brosofske (Composer); and Jeff Mockus (Sound Designer).

Pericles runs through June 22.

Next up, on July 2, is Oscar Wilde’s An Ideal Husband. Cal Shakes artistic director Jonathan Moscone teams up with Michael Butler (artistic director of Walnut Creek’s Center Repertory Company) making his Cal Shakes debut as politician Robert Chiltern. Associate artist Julie Eccles will play his wife, Gertrude, Stacy Ross will portray the villainess Mrs. Cheveley and Elijah Alexander (SO good in last summer’s Man and Superman) plays the rake Lord Goring.

Other Man and Superman cohorts returning for Mosconi’s latest production include include set designer Annie Smart, associate artist Nancy Carlin (Lady Basildon) and Delia MacDougall (Mrs. Marchmont). Joan Mankin will play Lady Markby, Sarah Nealis is young Mabel Chiltern and Danny Scheie as the Vicomte de Nanjac/Phipps.

Moscone’s creative team includes Annie Smart; Meg Neville (Costume Designer); Scott Zielinski (Lighting Designer) and Jeff Mockus (Sound Designer).

An Ideal Husband continues through July 27.

Visit for information, and don’t forget to check out the new-and-improved Cal Shakes blogs here. The blogs currently include an interview with Pericles himself, Christopher Kelly, and a plea for housing for Cal Shakes interns.

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