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Capital Classics Theatre Company Expands Shakespeare Festival in West Hartford to Repertory Format

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‘Hamlet’ and ‘The Taming of the Shrew’ will run in repertory in Capital Classics’ expanded 2024 Greater Hartford Shakespeare Festival, to be held at the University of Saint Joseph in West Hartford from July 10 through Aug. 4.

Capital Classics Theatre Company performing the ‘Tragedy of Macbeth.’ at USJ in 2023. Photo Credit: Bridget Bronsdon (we-ha.com file photo)


Capital Classics Theatre Company has announced the full casts and new enhancements for the expanded 2024 Greater Hartford Shakespeare Festival. For the first time in its 33-year history, Capital Classics will perform two productions in repertory: Shakespeare’s immortal tragedy Hamlet and the raucuous comedy The Taming of the Shrew.

Hamlet, which is set to be directed by Capital Classics Artistic Associate Geoffrey Sheehan, and The Taming of the Shrew, directed by Jan Mason, will each be performed 10 times over the course of four weeks. The alternating productions will begin performance on July 10 and run through Sunday, Aug. 4, 2024, on the campus of the University of Saint Joseph in West Hartford.

To accommodate the additional performances and growing demand, Capital Classics has expanded the schedule to include 10 rotating performances of each production, running Wednesday through Sunday evenings for four weeks. The complete repertory performance schedule can be found at capitalclassics.org/upcoming.

Mauricio Miranda, set to portray the title character in Capital Classics’ upcoming Hamlet, in the company’s 2022 production of Much Ado About Nothing. Photo by Steven Laschever (courtesy photo)

The Cast

With the exception of the title role in Hamlet which will be portrayed by Actor’s Equity Association actor Mauricio Miranda, the two productions will feature a repertory company performing roles in both productions. Hamlet and The Taming of the Shrew cast members and roles are as follows: Marie R. Altenor (Rosincrance in Hamlet; Grumio in Shrew); Heri Cruz, Jr. (Laertes in Hamlet, Petruchio in Shrew); Tim Diebolt (Barnardo in Hamlet, Tranio in Shrew); Joshua Eaddy (Claudius/Ghost in Hamlet, Vincentio in Shrew); Joslyn Eaddy (Marcellus in Hamlet, Bianca inShrew); Rebecca Ellis (Polonius in Hamlet, Gremio in Shrew); Josh Karam(Francisco in Hamlet, Lucentio in Shrew); Sam Lundstrom (Osric in Hamlet, Biondello in Shrew); Jason Pietroluongo (Guildensterne in Hamlet; Horte in Shrew); Anna Pitblado (Ophelia in Hamlet, various roles in Shrew); Kiera Sheehan (Horatio in Hamlet, Katharina in Shrew); and Laura Sheehan (Gertrude in Hamlet, Baptista in Shrew).

Heri Cruz, Jr. (center) as seen in the 2021 Greater Hartford Shakespeare Festival production of “As You Like It.” Photo credit: Sophie Christensen (we-ha.com file photo)

New Enhancements for 2024

Capital Classics has cued up new features to enhance the audience experience and enjoyment for the expanded festival. The company will be employing microphones and amplifcation to provide heightened audibility. Ticket holders will continue to be able to bring picnics to the campus, but, for the first time, the University of Saint Joseph will be selling festival concessions like hot dogs, sausage and pepper subs, beer, hard seltzer, soft drinks, candy, popcorn, and more. Hungry patrons can arrive starting 90 minutes before showtime to set up their blankets, chairs, and visit the concessions. The theatre company also will be introducing new souvenir merchandise and vending copies of their institutional biography, “Love’s Labour’s Won: Capital Classics Theatre Company – The First 30 Years.”

Greater Hartford Shakespeare Festival pre-show performers, The Elizabethan Consort, will return with their beloved mix of period madrigals and modern mash-ups on Fridays and Saturdays at 7 p.m. The University of Saint Joseph Dance Ensemble will perform pre-show on July 10, 14, and 17. South American musical group Violeta Parra will perform on Thursdays (July 11, 18, 25, and Aug. 1). There will be post-show talkbacks with members of the cast/crew after the Sunday matinees on July 14, 21, and 28. Additional guests will be announced via the company’s website at capitalclassics.org/upcoming.

Ticket Information

General Admission tickets for each show is $25. The discount for seniors (65 and up), full-time students (with ID), active military (with ID), groups of 10 or more is $17. For audience members wanting to see both Hamlet and The Taming of the Shrew, there is a multiple show discount of $20 for each show at the General Admission rate; $15 per person for each show for seniors, full-time students, active military, and groups of 10 or more. In addition, groups of 10 or more can also get special reserved lawn locations. Members of the West Hartford Chamber of Commerce can purchase discounted tickets for $20 each. Tickets for Hamlet and The Taming of the Shrew are on sale capitalclassics.org/upcoming.

About the Plays

In Hamlet, the Prince of Denmark has returned home after the death of the King. Mourning the loss of his father, the young prince must navigate the proclamations of a ghost; dangerous friends and relatives; and the disorienting discovery of his own place in the world.

While politics and psychological unraveling take center stage in Hamlet, The Taming of the Shrew centers on another type of madness: love and marriage. Lucentio has his heart set on marrying the beautiful Bianca. However, there’s one complication: her father won’t allow her to wed until her older sister, the tempestuous Katherine, is settled in her own marriage. Can the mercenary Petruchio “tame” Katherine, collect her dowry, and allow Lucentio and Bianca’s courtship to proceed … or will the titular “shrew” avoid the snares of her erstwhile suitor?

About Capital Classics Theatre Company

As Connecticut’s oldest continuously running outdoor Shakespeare festival, Capital Classics has a reputation for making Shakespeare exciting, accessible, and affordable. The Greater Hartford Shakespeare Festival is produced by Capital Classics Theatre Company in partnership with the University of Saint Joseph and is supported by the Connecticut Department of Economic Community Development/Office of the Arts; Hartford Distributors, Inc.; The John and Kelly Hartman Foundation; passionate Shakespeare fans; and local businesses and foundations.

Capital Classics, a non-Equity professional theatre company, was founded in 1991 to enrich the cultural environment of Greater Hartford through the theatre arts. We are committed to providing classical entertainment that is affordable, accessible, and engaging; serving the community with cultural and educational programming; and providing job opportunities and training to Connecticut’s professional theatre artists. Learn more about Capital Classics Theatre Company and the Greater Hartford Shakespeare Festival at CapitalClassics.org.

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