Delaware Theater Spotlight

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

The Two Gentlemen of Verona at the Delaware Shakespeare Festival

If you've never been to the Delaware Shakespeare Festival before, you're in for a treat! With beautiful Rockwood Park as the setting, the Delaware Shakespeare Festival is great for a date night, family night out, or a gathering with friends. This year, the Delaware Shakespeare Festival invited the Midnight Munchies food truck, so you can purchase burgers, fries and other fare, or you can do what I did--pack a picnic dinner and enjoy the show!

The Two Gentleman of Verona centers around two friends, Proteus (Adam Darrow) and Valentine (Brandon Pierce) who both have very similar tastes in women. This year's production was directed by Barrymore-nominated Samantha Bellomo, the Resident Director at People's Light and Theatre Company in Malvern, PA. Bellomo made an interesting choice with her direction by setting The Two Gentlemen of Verona in the 1920s. It allowed for fun, vibrant costumes, as well as great music that added to the atmosphere of the show. The other change with this year's production is the Delaware Shakespeare Festival's partnership with Faithful Friends Animal Society and Safe Haven Animal Sanctuary.

Launce (Griffin Stanton-Ameisen) and Crab play with the crowd.

The play calls for a dog to play the role of Crab. By partnering with two no-kill animal shelters, the Delaware Shakespeare Festival is raising awareness about the need for pet adoption. All four dogs playing the role of Crab are currently available for adoption, and information is available at the show.

The Delaware Shakespeare Festival's production of The Two Gentlemen of Verona is absolutely delightful. While Crab certainly steals the show, Griffin Stanton-Ameisen shines as Crab's master Launce. The lover's quadrangle is a theme that Shakespeare tends to revisit often, but The Two Gentlemen of Verona had the original lover's quadrangle. As charming as Darrow is as Proteus, there is a good portion of the show where you are just hoping that he gets caught. Darrow succeeds at keeping us invested in Proteus' love life, desite when he acts like a cad. Part of that could be because you can't help but fall in love with Clare Mahoney's Julia. It's no wonder that the beautiful Silvia, object of Proteus and Valentine's affections played by Emilie Krause, is so in love with Valentine. Emilie's faith as Silvia never falters.

The Two Gentlemen of Verona. From Left to right. Valentine (Brandon Pierce) and Proteus (Adam Darrow)

The Two Gentlemen of Verona at the Delaware Shakespeare Festival runs until July 28. Wednesday through Saturday performances begin at 7:30pm, and the gates open at 6:15pm for pre-show entertainment and picnicking. On Family Sundays, the shows start at 6pm, with picnicking beginning at 4:45pm. Children 12 and under are admitted fre with a paid adult admission on Sundays.

General admission to the festival is $15, $12 for seniors (65+) and Active Military with ID. Students are $10. Patrons should come prepared with their own chairs and/or blankets. You can purchase tickets at the gate, or visit

Posted at 12:06pm on July 17, 2013 by

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