By Linda Dillman
Canal Winchester High School thespians are gearing up for the 2018-19 theatre season with a full schedule of Shakespearean merriment, rock star Elton John and Tim Rice’s take on a classic opera, and a series about brief romantic encounters.
First on the schedule is the Fall Shorts Festival featuring eight short plays on Nov. 16 and 17 at 7 p.m. at the CWLS Education Center Oley Speaks Auditorium, 100 Washington St.
“All of these short plays involve the folly and complexity of romantic relationships,” said Drama Director Abbey Phillips.
Tickets are $7 for adults and $5 for students/seniors and are available at the door starting one hour before the show.
Next up is the annual madrigal, Feb. 16, which is a dinner show, with tickets $15 at 6 p.m. and a Feb. 17 lunch matinee for $10, at 2 p.m., held at the high school, 300 Washington St.
This year’s production is Shakespeare’s only fully-original story, “The Merry Wives of Windsor.” It was written around 1597 and it was first published in 1602.
The action focuses on Sir John Falstaff and his decision to pursue two of the married ladies of Windsor, Mistress Page and Mistress Ford. His reasons are less than honorable and primarily have to do with his need for financial income. The ladies, along with other members of the town, decide to make a fool of the loud, overbearing Falstaff.
“The Merry Wives of Windsor is a great story of how strong women can band together to get the upper hand on a loud, chauvinistic man,” said Director Todd Phillips. “We last performed this play in 2007. This is our 30th annual show and we’ve been blessed to have great crowds and support from our community and school district. We’re excited to bring Shakespeare to the Canal Winchester community for three decades.”
The last production of the year is the annual spring musical. The 2019 production is “Aida” and will be presented on April 26 at 7 p.m. and April 27, 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. at the CWLS Education Center Oley Speaks Auditorium, 100 Washington St.
The musical production is based on the plot of the Verdi opera written in 1871. The story takes place in ancient Egypt where an Egyptian prince falls in love with a native African Nubian princess. The clash of cultures brings about a Romeo and Juliet-style conflict where, even as they feel drawn to each other, their families and societies refuse to accept their love for each other.
“With this year’s musical, we enter a new genre of musicals,” Abbey said. “The Disney catalog offers a wide variety of complex stories and great, singable music. Our students are very excited to do Elton John and Tim Rice’s ‘Aida’”
Tickets are $10 for adults and $7 for students/seniors and are available at the door starting one hour before the show.
“So, turn off your TV and come see live theater. Your HBO is there every day, but live theater is only there for a moment,” said Abbey.
Tickets can also be purchased by emailing CWHSDrama@gmail.com, calling (614) 920-2680, or coming to the high school office.