The Rape of Lucrece
In celebration of William Shakespeare's 450th Birthday, and as part of its continuing effort to bring exciting, relevant theater to the Hudson Valley region, Kaliyuga Arts presents The Philadelphia Artists' Collective (PAC) production of Shakespeare's epic poem The Rape of Lucrece, adapted for the stage by PAC Co-Founding Artistic Director Dan Hodge. This limited engagement features Hodge himself in a gender-bending solo performance which Toby Zinman of the Philadelphia Inquirer called "theater without a net, a 90-minute monologue in rhymed couplets, a tour-de-force performance, riveting and absolutely accessible."
Penned originally in 1594, Shakespeare's poem The Rape of Lucrece recounts the legendary tale of the beautiful Lucretia and her brutal demise at the hands of Tarquin, who has been enflamed by reports of her incomparable chastity. This violent act sends ripples throughout the entire Roman Empire. Hodge's adaptation challenges audiences to ponder not only Tarquin's crime, but our society's own views of women.
Dan Hodge is a Philadelphia-based actor and director with a strong foundation in Shakespeare and the classics. As an actor, he has performed in over twenty full productions of Shakespeare's plays across the country at Pennsylvania, Delaware, and Michigan Shakespeare Festivals, Lantern Theatre, Two River Theatre Company, and The Old Globe (San Diego). In Philadelphia, he has directed recent acclaimed productions of Macbeth (Hedgerow theatre), The Tempest (Curio Theatre), Richard III (Commonwealth Classics), and Timon of Athens (PAC).
When asked about the content of the poem directly, Hodge explains: "The subject matter seems to be something that is, unfortunately, always timely. The events of the last few months and the wider public discussion surrounding gender roles and rape culture seem to cry out for a response. It's horrifying to consider that the mindset surrounding the justification of rape has remained unchanged since Shakespeare's time and likely long before." Hodge further notes that "Great theater is seldom about nice people doing good things for one another. Creating work that is difficult or even outright horrific for an audience will hopefully challenge them to dig deeper into their own lives to seek answers and possibly change their ways of thinking."
"It's hard to know which is the more astonishing: the revelation of a work by Shakespeare unknown to almost everybody, or the impassioned performance by Dan Hodge in delivering the epic poem, The Rape of Lucrece. Either way, this production by PAC (Philadelphia Artists' Collective) is not to be missed."
Toby Zinman, Philadelphia Inquirer
"Not only the performance of a lifetime by the incomparable Dan Hodge, but also a momentous socio-political statement and a stirring call to activism. This is a production that transcends the entertainment value of live theater and affirms its power in the sphere of human ethics By my calculation, when you factor Hodge into Shakespeare, the sum of genius is multiplied exponentially."
Debra Miller, Phindie
"Extraordinary It's a rare opportunity to hear a reading of Shakespeare's poetry rarer still to be able to witness it performed as a piece of theater A riveting performance."
Howard Shapiro, Shapiro on Theater
"Hodge deserves congratulations and acclaim for his sterling performance as well as for grasping the intrinsic drama in "The Rape of Lucrece" and having the foresight and courage to bring it to the stage. His work is nothing less than a bravura tour de force to be savored."
Neal Zoren, NealsPaper
"Dan, in roughly 90 minutes, brings to life Shakespeare's epic poem and puts on display the power of performance If there is one show that is not to be missed, it is the PAC's production. It is as relevant today as it was 400 years ago."
Brock D. Vickers, Brock D. Vickers Blog
The Philadelphia Artists' Collective, founded in 2008 by Damon Bonetti and Dan Hodge, is committed to promoting rarely performed classical plays through workshops and readings in the greater Philadelphia area. It is comprised of a group of performance and visual artist seeking to encourage the development of a common vocabulary and to promote arts awareness within the Philadelphia community. Its past readings and workshops have featured some of the region's finest artists, and its full productions (Duchess of Malfi, Changes of Heart, Creditors, Timon of Athens, The Sea Plays, and Mary Stuart) have garnered wide audience and critical praise. Website: www.philartistscollective.org.
About Kaliyuga Arts. We live in terrible times. The Hindus call this Kaliyuga, the last of four ages during which the world slowly devolves into intolerance, entropy and, finally, utter annihilation. But within the madness, islands of sanity can be created. And we believe that the Theatre in particular is one of the things helping us to hold back the dark -- that it is, indeed, one of the few remaining places on Earth where people still gather to celebrate, affirm, and uphold everything that makes us human. Our production company, Kaliyuga Arts, was originally founded in Los Angeles, California in 1986. From its inception, it has been dedicated to the presentation of off-beat, challenging work, and has established an ever-expanding reputation for artistic excellence with a wide range of material. Based in San Francisco from 1990 thru 2004, New York City from 2004 thru 2010, and currently located in Catskill, NY, Kaliyuga Arts presents some of the most exciting, risk-taking and innovative theatre available to audiences anywhere. We love to take on impossible challenges - imaginative use of limited means characterizes our work in general. What we look for above all in the plays we produce is theatre that's going to stimulate artists and audiences alike, shake 'em up a bit, take them places they've never been before. Website: Kaliyuga.com.
Bridge Street Theatre is a new performance space just 2 hours north of Manhattan in the Village of Catskill, NY. John Sowle and Steven Patterson of the acclaimed theater troupe Kaliyuga Arts (kaliyuga.com) purchased an old warehouse building near downtown Catskill in November of 2013 and are in the process of converting it into a year-round performing arts complex. They completed conversion the "Speakeasy" (cum Lobby) in the new space this past spring and have been presenting intimate theatre and cabaret performances there since May of 2014. Once the Mainstage is completed, the Theatre will be the home of Kaliyuga Arts. Website: BridgeSt.org.
Bridge Street Theatre Speakeasy (View)
44 W. Bridge Street
Catskill, NY 12414
|Minimum Age: 12|
|Kid Friendly: No|
|Dog Friendly: No|
|Wheelchair Accessible: Yes!|