Hartford Stage officially welcomed William Shakespeare and his “The Tempest” to town, with not one but two parties Friday night in Hartford.
Members of its Ovation and Director’s Societies and invited guests celebrated the return of Shakespeare with a pre-show party at The Marquee, a little soiree that included a poll of favorite works by the English master.
“King Lear,” said Bill Lally, whose Federman, Lally & Remis was one of the production sponsors. “King Lear” is about taxes and I am a tax person.” brother David Lally cited “Hamlet” as his favorite, stoically citing the story’s bend toward individuation from one’s past.
Bruce Anderson, whose wife, Lois Anderson, is joining the stage’s board, said his favorite is “Midsummer’s Night Dream.”
Not everyone was a Shakespeare fan, however, with one attorney who asked to be anonymous, admitting that he really was not a fan of any of the plays but was going to show his support for new artistic director, Darko Tresnjak.
“There are a lot of people excited about Shakespeare being back at Hartford Stage,” said the attorney. “Just not me.”
Excited about presenting Shakespeare in a new way, Tresjnak brought award-winning choreographer Peggy Hickey to the dinner. Hickey will be choreographing “A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder” scheduled to open at the theater in October.
After the illustrious, high flying and engaging production, it was over to the nearby Rio, where cast members, including Daniel Davis, who plays Prospero, the Duke of Milan, but it also well-known as Niles the Butler from the former television show ”The Nanny, celebrated with a cast party.
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