No one mined the depths of humanity like the Bard, and our new season explores character archetypes throughout the canon!
Performances begin at 7pm and are pay-what-you-can with a $10 suggested donation unless otherwise specified
All shows will perform the first Thursday and Friday of the month in the Ballroom at Mechanics Hall, with a second series of shows at different off-site venues
SHAPESHIFTERS, adapted and directed by Michael Levine
Whether it be to gain information, hide from one’s past sins, or remain in a country after exile, characters in Shakespeare’s plays often disguise their identity for ends both noble and nefarious. Our third season of First Friday shows kicks off with an interwoven series of shape-shifting scenes involving lovers, clowns and royalty.
Cursed to lure and entangle mortals with their magical songs or die if someone heard them and escaped, the Sirens of Greek mythology were fated to be pawns in their own lonely existence. Shakespeare’s heroines often suffer the same fate, innocently attracting people and situations that ultimately lead to their sad demise.
Thursday, November 2 and First Friday, November 3
Tuesday, November 7 at Port City Blue ($10)
CROSS-DRESSERS, adapted and directed by Michael Levine
Shakespeare loved to upend gender roles by dressing his heroines as men to allow them the freedoms that were denied to them in his time. December’s show traces the adventures of three of the bard’s most strong-willed women as they try to win the hearts of their lovers by donning a doublet and hose.
Thursday, November 30 and First Friday, December 1
Monday, December 4 at Bull Feeney’s
THE CURSÉD, adapted and directed by Megan Tripaldi
They thought they could get away with treating them like dirt. They thought that they were safe in their high castles. They were so very wrong. “Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned” doesn’t even begin to cover it.
Thursday, February 1 and First Friday, February 2
Friday, February 9 and Saturday, February 10 at Urban Farm Fermentory
THE VAUDEVILLIANS, adapted and directed by Michael Levine and Avner Eisenberg
While Shakespeare was indeed a master of words, his characters often displayed a mastery of silent comedy routines called lazzi that found their way into his plays from the streets of Italy where they originated in the rich tradition of commedia dell’arte. This month, Maine’s own master of vaudeville joins Naked Shakespeare to mix a little Phyzgig into the bard.
Thursday, March 1 and First Friday, March 2
Friday, March 9 and Saturday, March 10 at TBA
HEALERS, adapted and directed by Noah Bragg
What does it take to bring one back to health? Strong wine, song, herbal medications, or perhaps a vial of an undisclosed concoction offered by a shady apothecary in a shifty locale. Come discover Shakespeare’s many remedies in our season finale.
Thursday, April 5 and First Friday, April 6
Friday, April 13 and Saturday, April 14 at TBA