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The Merchant of Venice: An eloquent discussion of hate, prejudice and marriage 400 years in the making Hot

Denise BattistaDenise Battista   November 20, 2008  
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Merchant

No Nude Men

A One-Night All-Queer Stage Reading of The Merchant of Venice: An eloquent discussion of hate, prejudice and marriage 400 years in the making.

"A one-night only reading of Shakespeare's perpetually controversial THE MERCHANT OF VENICE featuring commentary from premiere West Coast Shakespeare scholar Denise Battista. Following will be an audience discussion led by a panel of writers and artists including world-renowned Jewish-American author and fantasist Peter S. Beagle and John Fisher, Artistic Director of Theater Rhinoceros, San Francisco's oldest queer theater company. The event is donation only (of any size) and all proceeds go to funding the legal battle to overturn Prop. 8 in California and grant the freedom to marry to all citizens.

The Merchant of Venice will be performed by:

Nathan Tucker (Shylock), Kendra Arimoto (Portia), Stuart Bousel (Bassanio), Christopher P. Kelly (Antonio), Shaun Landry (Nerissa), Lisa Swanson (Jessica), Tony Sommers (Lorenzo), David Bicha (Gratiano), Carl Lucania (Salanio), Rik Lopes (Salarino), Jason Wong (Prince of Morocco), Sean Fenton (Prince of Aragon), Brian Olkowski (Tubal), Chris Struett (Launcelot) and Ryan Hayes (Narrator).

The Company:

No Nude Men Productions, now in its sixth year, continues to offer challenging, literary stage works to the San Francisco theater scene, and to engage diverse audiences while pushing intellectual and visceral boundaries around performance. The San Francisco Bay Times has applauded NNM productions for "multi-layered, highly theatrical enigma(s)" and its ability to "pull off the slippery, serpentine constructs of reality… (and) create fascinating worlds within worlds," while the San Francisco Bay Guardian has praised NNM's "raw energy and sexy, sassy humor." A traveling company that "habitually does research-intensive adaptations of intellectual bedrock—Aeschylus, Goethe, Marlowe" (San Francisco Weekly), NNM offers small-budget, barebones, epic theater at its most compelling. Previous works have been Edward II, Speak To Me (2003), Troijka, Love Egos Alternative Rock, The Exiled (2004), The Book of Genesis Remixed and Remastered,  Phaedra (2005), Love's Labours Lost, Pretty Funny Women, No Exit, Hamlet (2006), Cerberus Barking, 5 Short Episodes In The Life of Sacagawea, Mathew 33:6 (2007), Learning From Hilde's Mistakes and The Monk (2008), and include world premieres by writers Stuart Bousel, Nirmala Nataraj, David Duman, Hilde Susan Jaegtnes and Alison Luterman.

The Panelists:

Denise Battista received her BA and MA in English Literature with an emphasis in Shakespeare studies, and continued her post-graduate work at the Shakespeare Institute in England. Denise has been reviewing Shakespeare and related productions, films, books and music for the past four years in the San Francisco Bay Area, New York, Chicago, Oregon, England, and at the Sundance Film Festival, and has served as the Editor-in-Chief of PlayShakespeare.com since March 2007. Denise lectures in the Humanities Department at San Francisco State University, teaching Shakespeare, various literature, poetry and philosophy.  She guest lectures on Shakespeare and theatre at various high schools and other venues in the Bay Area. Denise has also co-produced two productions at San Francisco's American Conservatory Theatre.

Peter S. Beagle was born in New York City in 1939 and raised in the borough of that city known as the Bronx. He originally proclaimed he would be a writer when 10 years old: subsequent events have proven him either prescient or even more stubborn than hitherto suspected. Today, thanks to classic works such as A FINE AND PRIVATE PLACE, THE LAST UNICORN, TAMSIN, and THE INNKEEPER'S SONG, he is acknowledged as America's greatest living fantasy author; and his dazzling abilities with language, characters, and magical storytelling have earned him many millions of fans around the world.

In addition to stories and novels, Peter has written numerous teleplays and screenplays, including the animated versions of THE LORD OF THE RINGS and THE LAST UNICORN, plus the fan-favorite "Sarek" episode of STAR TREK: THE NEXT GENERATION. His nonfiction book I SEE BY MY OUTFIT, which recounts a 1963 journey across America on motor scooter, is considered a classic of American travel writing; and he is also a gifted poet, lyricist, and singer/songwriter.

"Two Hearts," Peter's sequel story to THE LAST UNICORN, won both the Hugo and Nebula Awards.

2009 will see a veritable flood of new Peter S. Beagle publishing, including the story collection WE NEVER TALK ABOUT MY BROTHER from Tachyon; a manga-style graphic adaptation of THE LAST UNICORN from EigoManga; and numerous titles from Conlan Press, including two new novels (SUMMERLONG and I'M AFRAID YOU'VE GOT DRAGONS), a STAR TREK memoir (WRITING SAREK), an essay collection, (SMÉAGOL, DÉAGOL, AND BEAGLE: ESSAYS FROM THE HEADWATER OF MY VOICE) three story collections (THE FIRST LAST UNICORN AND OTHER BEGINNINGS; FOUR YEARS, FIVE SEASONS; and THREE FACES OF THE LADY), plus audiobook releases of many of his titles.

John Fisher is the author and director of the following plays: The Joy of Gay Sex (Actors Playhouse, NYC; Published by BPPS), Medea: The Musical (HBO U.S. Comedy Arts Festival, Aspen; Stage Door Theatre; Published by Zyzzyva); Queer Theory (SoHo Playhouse, NYC); There's Something About Marriage (Center for Architecture, NYC); Combat! (Victoria Theatre); Partisans (Zellerbach Playhouse); Amnesia and Barebacking (both at Theatre Rhino). (There are many others!) His plays have been produced in New York, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Seattle, and on HBO. John is the only two-time winner of the Will Glickman Playwright Award, as well as being a recipient of the NEA Grant, the 2000 GLAAD Media Award for Best Theatre, the L.A. Weekly Award for Best Musical and Best Script, the BackStage West Garland Award, two Cable Car Awards, a San Francisco Bay Guardian Goldie Award and ten Bay Area Theatre Critics' Circle Awards. He received his Ph.D. in Directing from the University of California in 2001 and has taught at U.C. Berkeley, U.C. Santa Cruz, A.C.T. and in the Graduate Play Writing program at the Yale School of Drama. John has been a fellow of the Townsend Center, developed work under Wheeler and Regents Fellowships, and is a winner of the Eisner Prize, three Mark Goodson Awards and an SF Arts Commission grant. Recent writing projects include Special Forces, which opened in San Francisco in May 2007 and enjoyed an extended run; a workshop production of his play Art Commission; and his drama about the San Francisco's most famous Indian-American Ishi: The Last of the Yahi. Special Forces has been adapted as a screenplay. John describes it as "a combination of Patton and Paris is Burning." He is represented for theatre by Pat McLaughlin of Beacon Artists and for film by Rollins & Joffe. John has studied play writing with Richard Nelson, Paula Vogel, Lisa Kron, Deb Margolin, John Guare, Adam Rapp and Derek Wolcott. Since 2002, he has served as the Artistic Director of Theatre Rhinoceros, the longest running LGBT theatre in the world, where his current show The Rhino Christmas Panto runs through December 21.
 

Tuesday, December 9, 2008 
7:30-10:30 p.m.

The Exit Theater
156 Eddy Street (between Mason and Taylor)
San Francisco, CA 94102

Donations can be made at the door or by contacting the organizer.
Contact: Stuart Bousel (Artistic Director,  No Nude Men)
Phone:  415-994-1367
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 


 

 

 

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