Thought by many to be Shakespeare’s best and deepest comedy, Twelfth Night is certainly one of his most popular. Considered by some to be a chamber piece that meditates on love, death, and the passage of time; others think of it as a rollicking comedy. The truth lies somewhere in between. Farcical elements combine with more serious matters of the heart when Viola, a young woman shipwrecked in Illyria and separated from her twin brother whom she presumes dead, disguises herself as a page named Cesario.
Viola promptly falls in love with her master, Orsino, who is in love with the noblewoman Olivia (also mourning a dead brother), who falls in love with the supposed boy, "Cesario." Meanwhile, members of Olivia’s household exact revenge on one of Shakespeare’s great comic characters, the puritanical steward, Malvolio. Artistic Director Paul Barnes will direct the production and team up once again with Jack Forbes Wilson, musical director/adaptor for GRSF’s recent productions of The Comedy of Errors and The Two Gentlemen of Verona.
…in the case of the Great River Shakespeare Festival’s production of "Twelfth Night," one needs a thesaurus to come up with new words of praise. "Magical" comes first to mind, followed by "marvelous," "endlessly entertaining," "an absolute treat,"…
–Tom Weber, Rochester Post-Bulletin (7/12/13)