Justice has never been hipper than when Theatricum Botanicum presents Measure for Measure, re-setting the Bard’s dark comedy in California during the turbulent ‘60s. Sex, liberation and the death penalty are just some of the themes explored, which makes it a perfect fit for the volatile heyday of protest and social change. Director Ellen Geer uses the time shift to examine the issues with probing questions: Does society need its morality dictated by civil law? Which is more important to the health of a nation: mercy or justice? Does humanity need the death penalty to keep itself in line? Still as relevant today as when it was first performed, this unconventional comedy of ethics pits might against right in a battle of poetic justice.
“The ‘60s were all about change,” Geer points out. “It was an era that saw people becoming actively involved, when issues of women’s rights, religious freedoms and the emergence of Black and Latino pride were at the forefront of political debate. Measure is one of Shakespeare’s quieter comedies, a little more serious in its subject matter, but with a happy ending nonetheless.”
Measure for Measure opens on Saturday, June 2 through September 1. Tickets are $20-$33. The Will Geer Theatricum Botanicum is located at 1419 N. Topanga Canyon Blvd., Topanga, CA, 90290. Audience members are advised to dress casually (warmly for evenings) and bring cushions for bench seating. For reservations and information, call 310-455-3723 or go to www.theatricum.com
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