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Archive for Independent Shakespeare Company

JULIUS CAESAR – Independent Shakespeare Co at Atwater Crossing Arts + Innovation Complex

Grettel Cortes

Grettel Cortes

Ellen Dostal – Broadway World

Taking its cue from Orson Welles‘ 1937 Mercury Theatre production of JULIUS CAESAR, Independent Shakespeare Co. exercises its exceptional ability to adapt one of Shakespeare’s massive works for an intimate indoor setting without giving up any of the play’s scope or impact.
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Now running through May 11

MEASURE FOR MEASURE – ISC at the Old Zoo at Griffith Park,

Photo by Mike Ditz

Photo by Mike Ditz

Margaret Gray – LA Times

Every summer I’m surprised by how much I enjoy the Independent Shakespeare Co.’s Griffith Park Free Shakespeare Festival. Performances start at 7 p.m., when the sun is still a bit too bright and the actors are oddly dressed figures in the distance, shouting British things I can’t quite hear over the crinkling of potato chip bags in the crowd. Read more…

Now running through July 22

STRANGE EVENTFUL HISTORY at the Atwater Crossing Arts + Innovation Complex

Photo by Grettel Cortes

Photo by Grettel Cortes

Deborah Klugman – Stage Raw

Few Americans have a detailed understanding of the history behind Shakespeare’s history plays. We may grasp the themes of his work – the struggle for power and/or the Bard’s reflections on what makes or breaks a king – but many of us are less familiar with the actual historical events, or the familial relationship between one warring monarch and the next. Read more…

Now running through November 22.



Reynaldo Macías / Blu PHIV Photography

Reynaldo Macías / Blu PHIV Photography

David C. Nichols – LA Times

A skirmish of wit attends “Much Ado About Nothing” in Griffith Park, and it proves a notable argument. Independent Shakespeare Company concludes its summer season with an agreeably quirky, riotously funny take on the Bard’s evergreen romantic comedy. Read more…

Now running through August 30.


THE TAMING OF THE SHREW – Independent Shakespeare Company in Griffith Park


Photo by Grettel Cortes

Steven  Leigh Morris – Stage Raw

That David Melville should bring La Dolce Vita into his family-friendly outdoor staging of Shakespeare’s knotty Italian comedy makes sense. Italian comedies of the 1960s are no less dodgy, regarding their sexual politics, than the amused brutality towards a defiant spouse found in Taming of the Shrew’s central story. Independent-minded, embittered Katherine (Melissa Chalsma) turns obedient only after being violently, jocularly wooed by her flippant suitor/husband Petruchio (Luis Galindo). This is every tyrant’s fantasy. Read more…

Deborah Klugman – LA Weekly

How does — or should — a modern director deal with the egregious chauvinism in The Taming of the Shrew? While there are ways, you won’t uncover them in director David Melville‘s current staging, on display weekends in Griffith Park. <em>Read more…</em>

Margaret Gray – LA Times

Sometimes I wish Shakespeare had written a different version of “The Taming of the Shrew” — one in which the shrew is “tamed” with, say, empathy and affection instead of torture.  Read more…


Now playing through August 29.

ROMEO AND JULIET at the Independent Shakespeare Company Studio


Phto by Grettel Cortes

Sharon Perlmutter  -  Talkin’ Broadway

I’ll be honest: what initially appealed to me about Independent Shakespeare Co.’s Romeo & Juliet was that it condensed the play. The play is performed with only eight actors. Some of the actors double up on roles; sometimes the lines of one character have been given to another. Thus, for example, Benvolio also covers some key lines normally given to Balthasar. And, the actress performing Benvolio also doubles as Lady Capulet. In addition to paring down the company, the script is also shortened. Read more…

Now running through May 25.

Red Barn, Independent Shakespeare Company in the ISC Studio


Red Barn by David Melville and Melissa Chalsma.


Dany Margolies –

Captivating storytelling hallmarks this world premiere musical in Los Angeles that centers on an 1827 crime in the English countryside. David Melville and Melissa Chalsma, better-known to summer-Shakespeare audiences as the makers of Independent Shakespeare Company’s outdoor seasons, wrote the book for Red Barn, in part because the story, told to Melville by his mother when he was a boy, continued to stay with him—an excellent recommendation for a tale. In it, the mole-catcher’s daughter, Maria, had an affair with the landowner’s son and heir, Matthew, and bore his daughter. Matthew would set wedding dates and then postpone, until his debauched lust pushed him into an even more irrevocable act. Read more…