Posted by Mary Wimberley on 2007-11-15

Samford University Theatre's production of William Shakespeare's Twelfth Night Nov. 29, 30 and Dec. 2 will offer a good feel for theatre as it was in the Bard's own time.

Theatre professor Mark Castle, who directs the play, considers Twelfth Night one of the most engaging and accessible of Shakespeare's plays. The classic tale of romance and redemption, set in the mysterious kingdom of Illyria, combines storytelling, music and dance.

"And, it has the twist of mistaken identity and girls playing boys. You can play with lots of gender stereotypes," said Castle.

While most Samford Theatre productions are staged in Harrison Theatre, Twelfth Night will be presented in Brock Recital Hall.

"The space is designed in the neoclassical style and fits with the Shakespearean period," Castle said of the 300-seat performance venue, which opened in fall of 2006.

There will be no scenery for Samford's Twelfth Night. "Only costumes and props as Shakespeare's actors would have performed it for the Queen of England 400 years ago," said Castle.

Each night, an audience member will be invited to be the Queen and take a seat of honor for the performance.

The 14-member cast includes Jen Taylor as Viola, Christina Myers as Olivia, John Cooley as Malvolio, Neal Tucker as Sir Toby and Brad Roller as Orsino.

Performances will be at 7:30 p.m. on Nov. 29 and 30, and 2:30 and 7:30 p.m. on Dec. 2.

Admission is $10 adults, $8 senior adults and $6 students/children. For information, call (205) 726-2853. 

The cast will perform a condensed version of the play, dubbed "Twelfth Night in Twelve Minutes" as part of the School of Performing Arts' Festival of Christmas Music in Wright Center Concert Hall on Dec. 1.


Samford is a leading Christian university offering undergraduate programs grounded in the liberal arts with an array of nationally recognized graduate and professional schools. Founded in 1841, Samford is the 87th-oldest institution of higher learning in the United States. Samford enrolls 5,791 students from 49 states, Puerto Rico and 16 countries in its 10 academic schools: arts, arts and sciences, business, divinity, education, health professions, law, nursing, pharmacy and public health. Samford fields 17 athletic teams that compete in the tradition-rich Southern Conference and ranks 6th nationally for its Graduation Success Rate among all NCAA Division I schools.