The Porters of Hellsgate present Shakespeare's The Merchant of Venice
Continuing their fifth season in the summer of 2011, The Porters of Hellsgate return to The Whitmore-Lindley Theatre Complex in North Hollywood with William Shakespeare's The Merchant of Venice. Taking liberty with time and place, The Porters explore race, class, sexuality and wealth for their six-week run of the Bard's ultimately tragic comedy.
It begins on February 14, 1961 at the NYSE, where we find Antonio overcome with a sadness undefinable. Despite his lack of liquid assets, he agrees to help his dear friend Bassanio by use of his credit to obtain a loan so that he may travel to Belmont to court the wealthy heiress, Portia. Their last resort and unlikely benefactor is discovered in the rich Jew, Shylock, who offers to take their loan on one condition: that should they fail to pay back the sum within three months, the Jew may take a pound of Antonio's flesh to settle the loan...
The Porters of Hellsgate were formed in late 2006 by Edward Castuera, Jack Leahy and Charles Pasternak. Their inaugural production of William Shakespeare's Julius Caesar opened at the end of that year. Since then the Porters have produced ten more Shakespearean productions: Twelfth Night ('07), Richard III ('07), Titus Andronicus ('07), Two Gentlemen of Verona ('07/'08), Much Ado About Nothing ('08), Macbeth ('08), Love's Labour's Lost ('08), Richard II ('09), Hamlet ('10), and The Comedy of Errors ('10). They have also produced Tom Stoppard's Rosencrantz & Guildenstern Are Dead ('10, in rep with Hamlet), an original work, Deity Clutch (originally produced in '10, then remounted for the 2011 Hollywood Fringe Festival), penned by Associate Artistic Director Gus Krieger, and earlier this year, the world premiere of a new translation of Oedipus the Tyrant ('11), translated by resident artist Jamey Hecht, Ph.D. In 2010, Artistic Director Charles Pasternak was awarded "Shakespeare Performance of the Year" by StageSceneLA for his performance in the title role of Hamlet in The Porters' production of The Bard's timeless tragedy (which also received a "GO!" from the LA Weekly). Also awarded, Executive Director Edward Castuera, in the role of Horatio, earning "Best Performance by a Featured Actor/Drama," and Associate Artistic Director Thomas Bigley, earning "Outstanding Direction of a Drama." It is the Porters' continuing intent to bring powerful productions of classical work to the Los Angeles community.
Praise for The Porters of Hellsgate:
"A promising, young theatre company."
-David C. Nichols, The Los Angeles Times
"Commanding articulation of the poetical prose."
-Steven Leigh Morris, LA Weekly
"Every actor onstage in this Porters of Hellsgate effort masters heightened language."
-Dany Margolies, Back Stage
"Worthy of comparison to The Mercury Players."
-Amy Bowder, The Tolucan Times
"A force to be reckoned with in Los Angeles classical theatre."
-Steven Stanley, StageSceneLA
"It's been said before, but bears repeating: It's hard not to be a fan of The Porters of Hellsgate."
-Michael Kostroff, PlayShakespeare.com
Praise for The Porters' 2011 Season thus far:
-LA Theatre Review
-Stage & Cinema
-The Tolucan Times
-LA Stage Times
The Whitmore (View)
11006 Magnolia Blvd.
North Hollywood, CA 91601
|Kid Friendly: Yes!|
|Dog Friendly: No|
|Wheelchair Accessible: Yes!|