Sept. 10, 2003
Aquila Theatre Company of London/New York will mark their fourth annual appearance at the Rose Lehrman Arts Center on the Wildwood Campus of Harrisburg Area Community College on Sunday, October 5 at 3PM with William Shakespeare's powerful drama, Othello. This event is sponsored by the HACC Alumni Association, with media sponsorship from Central PA Magazine. Members of the company will lead a pre-event lecture in the Studio Theatre at 2PM.

Set in a hot-bed of racial hatred, jealousy and mistrust, the tragic masterpiece, Othello, explores the destruction of a noble spirit. Drawing from the company's expertise, Aquila's productions often feature unique and modern settings capable of bringing relevance and new life to Shakespeare's work. An original musical score with an epic and filmic quality heightens and intensifies the experience.

Othello, a Moor and mercenary for the Venetian army, secretly marries Desdemona, the daughter of a high powered senator. Othello's ensign, Iago, enraged at being passed over for promotion and envious of Othello's conquests, begins his revenge. Iago is the trusted friend and confidant to Othello, and cunningly uses his position to plant seeds of jealousy and doubt in Othello's mind about his wife's fidelity. Meanwhile, with brilliant Machiavellian duplicity, he advises Desdemona to act in ways that will only fuel her husband's suspicions. In this fascinating, psychological character study, only the audience is aware of Iago's villainous plan. He confesses to them throughout the play and they watch, captivated, as he makes "the net that shall enmesh them all" (Othello. Act ii. Sc. 3).

Innovative and dynamic, the Aquila Theatre Company has gained a well-earned international reputation as one of the foremost producers of touring classical theatre. Founded in London in 1991 by Peter Meineck, the company has won both critical and academic acclaim for its work worldwide which includes extensive touring throughout Europe, the United States and Canada. In 1999, Aquila moved to New York City as a U.S. not-for-profit organization and has since presented eight New York productions including Homer's Iliad: Book One, Shakespeare's Much Ado About Nothing and Comedy of Errors. Aquila is the professional company in residence at the NYU Center for Ancient Studies and hosts a studio program in acting at the Tisch School of the Arts.

This presentation of the Aquila Theatre Company is a part of Shakespeare in American Communities, a national theatre touring initiative sponsored by the National Endowment for the Arts and the Sallie Mae Fund in cooperation with Arts Midwest. Aquila Theatre Company is one of six theatre companies engaged in the largest tour of Shakespeare in our nation's history, reaching all 50 states. The HACC presentation is also part of a Mid Atlantic Foundation tour, funded by the Foundation in partnership with the National Endowment for the Arts Regional Touring Program.

A Shakespeare master class for the community will be held on Saturday, October 4 at 3PM. The class is for ages 16 and up. There is a $12 fee per participant. Space is limited. To pre-register, please call 780-2545.

Tickets for Othello are $22 adult / $15 for student/senior citizen. Early reservations recommended. Box Office phone (717) 231-ROSE (7673). Tickets are not needed for the pre-event lecture in the Studio Theatre at 2PM.

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