Twelfth Night 2007

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

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A terrible shipwreck separates twins, Viola and Sebastian, and each believes the other has met a watery death.  Viola is washed ashore with her ship’s Captain in Illyria, a country strange to her.  For her safety, she decides to disguise herself as a boy and seek employment with Duke Orsino.  Calling herself Casario, she quickly becomes a favourite of the Duke, who completely believes she is a young man.  Orsino is melancholy because his overtures of love to Olivia are unsuccessful (she has forsworn love for seven years while she mourns for her recently deceased father and brother) so he appoints Cesario to woo her on his behalf.  Olivia’s Uncle, Sir Toby Belch, however, has different plans for his niece and hopes to arrange a marriage between her and his rich friend Sir Andrew Aguecheek.  Olivia’s maid, Maria, suggests that Toby should come in earlier at night and reduce his drinking if he is to remain in Olivia’s good books and continue living in her mansion. Feste, Olivia’s Clown, returns from an unexcused absence, and quickly re-establishes his place with Olivia using his wit, despite the protests of Malvolio, her prudish and proper head servant.  Viola arrives disguised as Cesario, and finds that the initial resistance soon melts away.  Olivia concocts a story of Cesario leaving a ring and instructs Malvolio to give chase and return it.  When he tries, Viola realizes that her disguise has worked too well and that Olivia has fallen in love with her just as she has fallen in love with Duke Orsino.  Meanwhile, Antonio has rescued Sebastian who is depressed because he believes his twin sister Viola has drowned.  Sebastian decides to seek his fortune in the Duke Orsino’s court, and even though Antonio has enemies there, he will follow to ensure Sebastian’s safety.  A late night party leads to trouble for Sir Toby and Malvolio chastises him.  Sir Toby and Maria plot for revenge.

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