Bard to return to Rugby

It’s been seven years since the “master playwright” has graced the Upper School, but Shakespeare is back in Rugby Auditorium Feb. 9 with “Love’s Labour’s Lost.”

The drama department, believing it was time for another Shakespeare production, chose the comedy for its abundant female roles and relative obscurity.

Love’s Labor’s Lost will be a full length, original Shakespeare production. The play begins when the King of Navarre (Andrew Pattison ’07) and his three lords swear an oath of abstinence, tangling themselves in a web of deceitful lust when the femme-fatale Princess of France (Ellie Bensinger ’09) and her three maidens come for a surprise visit.

Director Ted Walch put together a production of “Love’s Labour’s Lost” at Harvard-Westlake 12 years ago. The show  featured alumnus Jake Gyllenhaal ’98.

Rather than the classic 16th century castles, the characters will move through a surreal backdrop decked out to suggest a playground with fixtures like a slide, swings and trapeze.

As the play takes a dark twist and the characters mature, the set will darken. The currently evolving theme will be carried on through the costumes, which will not reflect a specific time or place but will be random.

Costume designers Lisa Peters and Clay Hawkins ’07 are toying with the idea of dressing a character as a matador.

“It’s about young people,” Walch said. “And it’s funny. There will be some delicious surprises.”