Onstage February 11 – 21, 2009

Nelson County Shakespeare Festival & the Hamner Theater presents:
Richard III
by William Shakespeare

Richard III in the Press:
Casey Gillis, in The News & Advance, Feb. 11, 2009
Sign of the times: Elizabethan-era experiment takes the stage
w/photo by Kim Raff

Jane Norris, in the Daily Progress, Feb 12, 2009
‘Richard III’ takes a page from Elizabethan playbook

How far will one man go to obtain & maintain power?
Mary Coy’s experiment in bringing Elizabethan theatrical practices to Nelson County.

Free Preview, Wednesday, February 11 at 7:30pm

All tickets $10 for the following performances,
held in the Hamner Theater:
Thursday, February 12 at 7:30pm
Friday, February 13 at 7:30pm
Sunday, February 15 at 2:00pm

Thursday, February 19 at 7:30pm
Friday, February 20 at 7:30pm
Saturday, February 21 at 7:30pm

Reservations/Information 434.361.1999

Special show – Saturday, February 14 at 6:30pm in the Great Hall
Tickets $75 for Nobles (includes Banquet, Lecture/Discussion & Stage Seating)/ $5 for Show only

Press photos

Philip Lawton, Michael Dowell, and Mary Coy play the York brothers, Edward, Clarence, and Richard.
Jim Johnston, Jonas Collins, and John Holdren play their trusted advisors.
Boomie Pedersen plays Queen Elizabeth, and Betty Tabony, DJ and Dakota Crocker, Noah Hughey-Commers and Cody Harlow play members of her family.
Alan Hickerson plays Catesby.
Mary Haines-Johnson, Koda Kerl, Jack Luecke, Audrey Wood, Margaret Clair, Mariflo Stevens and Ginny Weckstein play other queens, lords, murderers, and brats.

A Renaissance is coming to Nelson County theater.

Using Elizabethan rehearsal practices like memorizing all your lines by the first rehearsal, actor-manager (another Elizabethan practice), Mary Coy, and the Nelson COunty SHakespeare Festival, is organizing a production of RICHARD III that takes advantage of the theater energy generated by the Hamner Theater and her six years work as Shakespeare consultant at the Nelson Middle School.

“RICHARD III is about the lengths one man will go to obtain and maintain power,” says Coy, Richard manipulates his friends, the church, and the public to get what he wants. He will stop at nothing. It will be interesting to see how much the audience is repelled by or attracted to him.”

Besides years of experience acting and coaching Shakespeare, Coy has a Masters of Fine Arts in Shakespeare and Renaissance Literature in Performance from Mary Baldwin College and has worked as assistant director and stage manager at the Blackfriars Playhouse in Staunton. Along with Nelson County Schools Gifted Coordinator Betty Tabony, Coy has written a manual, which guides teachers in using Shakespeare to fulfill SOL’s and has taught Shakespeare to hundreds of Nelson County sixth graders. She and Tabony recently co-authored a young people’s version of KING LEAR for Swan Books.

“Performing Shakespeare is a challenge and I want to embark on that challenge here in the county with the adults and kids I’ve worked with over the years, people who know how much I love to teach and perform, people who want to challenge themselves.” says Coy.

“Being involved in theater is a lot of fun and Shakespeare is a great way to continue and/or begin that involvement,” says Coy. She goes on to say that actors aren’t the only people needed to ensure a great production. “We need prompters at each rehearsal, house managers, props and costume coordinators- all people important in Elizabethan theater as well theater today.”