The Winter's Tale 2011

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Directed by Mark von Eschen, Set and Lighting Design by Stephen Wade, Costume Design by Beverley Kobelsky

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Our story begins in the court of Leontes, King of Uppsala.  Leontes’ oldest and best friend, Polixenes, King of North Umbria, is bidding farewell and preparing to sail home.  Polixenes has been away from home for nine months but his hosts do not want to see him leave.  Leontes is unable to convince him to say, but Hermione, Queen of Uppsala, charms Polixene and he decides to stay.  Unfortunately, Leontes misinterprets this and becomes jealous. Leontes is convinced that Hermione has been unfaithful with Polixenes.  Leontes questions his bodyguard Camillo, but despite Camillo’s belief in the Queen’s honesty; Leontes orders him to assassinate Polixenes.  Unable to proceed with his orders, Camillo confesses to Polixenes and helps him flee the country.  Leontes interprets their escape as evidence of guilt; he arrests Hermione to prevent her escape.  Leontes sends to the oracle for advice, the gods will know if she is honest.  At Hermione’s trial, the oracle confirms her innocence, but Leontes overrules.  His refusal to believe in the oracle triggers a chain of events that destroys his family.

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