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Shakespeare's 'Love's Labour's Lost' to be performed in Holyoke

HOLYOKE The Massachusetts International Festival of the Arts (MIFA) is presenting Shakespeare's Globe Theatre from London as the major event of its 2009 fall season. The Globe production will be Shakespeare's comedy, "Love's Labour's Lost." This limited, five performance engagement runs Dec. 3 to 5 at the War Memorial Auditorium, 310 Appleton St. The production recreates the Shakespearian theatre experience, bringing the Bard's artistry to life through period costumes and staging. Of the production, The Times of London said, "With a delightful design and jaunty music it has abundant charm ... entirely enchanting." Directed by Dominic Dromgoole, designed by Jonathan Fensom with music composed by Claire Van Kampen, this United States debut production of "Love's Labour's Lost" will tour exclusively to New York City, Los Angeles, Philadelphia, Ann Arbor, Mich., and Holyoke. "This presentation of 'Love's Labour's Lost' is another example of the kind of world-class work that MIFA brings to the city of Holyoke and the Pioneer Valley in general," Donald T. Sanders, MIFA artistic executive director, said. "It gives our audiences an idea of the kind of fare they can expect on a regular basis once our Victory Theater is open in 2012." One of England's three prominent classical theatre companies, the Globe shares stature with the Royal National Theatre and the Royal Shakespeare Company. The Globe presents its seasons of critically acclaimed productions in a reconstruction of Shakespeare's original Globe Theatre on London's South Bank. The recreation opened in 1997. Shakespeare's Globe was founded by the late and pioneering American actor/director Sam Wanamaker, who persevered for nearly 30 years to rebuild a replica of the Globe near its original site in London. Since the Globe's reopening by Her Majesty the Queen in 1997, Shakespeare's Globe has become one of the most popular visitor destinations in the UK, at the heart of the regeneration of London's Bankside. Under the leadership of Dromgoole, the theatre season plays in repertory from April to October annually, and has gained an international reputation for performance excellence. The theatre has fulfilled its vision of recreating the infectious energy and spontaneity of Shakespeare plays as they were originally presented in an urban amphitheater. MIFA is restoring the historic 1,600-seat Victory Theatre located on Suffolk Street. The theatre, built in 1920, will be returned to its original purpose as the major live theatre house for the city of Holyoke and its surrounding communities. The Victory Theatre's restoration is envisioned to be a catalyst for the revitalization of downtown Holyoke, a focal point for the arts in the Pioneer Valley and leverage the arts as a force for economic development of the region. The performance schedule for "Love's Labour's Lost" is Dec. 3 at 8 p.m.; Dec. 4 at 1 and 8 p.m.; and Dec. 5 at 2 and 8 p.m. The tickets are first tier, $45; second tier, $35. There are limited rush seats at $20 with student identification card. For more information e-mail info@mifafestival.org or call 540-0200.

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