Bits & Pieces
Portland Center Stage is putting on a Shakespeare classic, "Macbeth," with an all-female cast, and Artistic Director Marissa Wolf is thrilled with the response, so far.
Many variations on "Macbeth" have been staged over the years — centuries — and an all-female version strikes the right chord, she said.
"It's quite embraced," Wolf said. "If you're a lover of Shakespeare and 'Macbeth,' you'll love this show.
"It's a text, and it's edited to make it a work, and the scenes are tighter and fiercer, but it's truly like all the robust and muscular language you know and love from 'Macbeth' — by women, who inhabit the roles fully. If anything, it allows you to hear the nuance of the language in new and exciting ways."
Adriana Baer directs, and it stars Dana Green, Chantal DeGroat and Lauren Bloom Hanover, who tackle all the roles in the infamous tale of political gluttony and supernatural vengeance. It features an edited script by Lee Sunday Evans and original music by Heather Christian, and a set depicting ancient ruins rising from Scottish sand dunes.
Christian's compositions influenced Baer's direction.
"The music grounded me immediately in the earth, and I felt like I was standing with my own bare feet in the dirt," Baer said. "I saw that the story I wanted to tell was much more ancient than so many contemporary adaptations. I knew immediately that these women are inextricably woven together and that they are sharing the wisdom of their ancestors. There is an oral history at play here. I want the audience to see that this story is about all of us."
Wolf said: "I'm impressed with Adriana Baer's production. It has the muscularity and richness of 'Macbeth,' and it's filled with gutsy, boldness, eroticism, violence and sorrow that 'Macbeth' productions are. Because it's women, it foregrounds questions in different ways, with beautiful music throughout. The play looks at a bleeding country and music taken from Shakespeare text and highlights the moments, such as, 'Alas poor country,' and it includes the audience in questions it asks in thoughtful and welcoming ways."
Wolf added that it's "not a radical interpretation," but it's a show that needed to be part of her scheduling first season, and "I believe Shakepeare's writing demands us" to write allegorically about current events.
The show continues through Nov. 24 at The Armory, 128 N.W. 11th Ave. Tickets: $25-$62, www.pcs.org.
The former Miss Oregon USA from 2018, Toneata Morgan, has joined the cast of the reality series "Temptation Island." She's a 23-year-old model/entrepreneur who's originally from Coquille and is now living in Los Angeles.
The second season of "Temptation Island," which airs on the USA Network, starting Thursday, Oct. 10, puts singles on an island and drama ensues as they test their newly formed relationships.
Publicity about Morgan said: "(She) loves to be 'glam,' but can also 'rough it' in the great outdoors. She is looking for a man who will support her business aspirations and be a true partner. Will her Mr. Right be waiting for her on 'Temptation Island?'"
Oregon Ballet Theatre, which currently is putting on "OBT ROAR(S)" at Keller Auditorium, has promoted two dancers from company artists to soloists: Jessica Lind and Thomas Baker.
Lind joined OBT's professional division in 2011 and Baker as an apprentice in 2010, before each moved up to company artist.
"Jessica and Thomas both have long associations with OBT and have worked tirelessly to improve and grow," said Kevin Irving, artistic director. "They've turned themselves into really fine artists who can transition from full-on classical ballet mode to hardcore contemporary at a moment's notice."
Two Trailkeepers of Oregon (TKO) leaders, Tom Kloster and Steve Kruger, will discuss the past, present and future of the Mount Hood trail system at 7 p.m. Friday, Oct. 25, at the Mazama Mountaineering Center, 527 S.E. 43rd Ave. It's sponsored by the Mazamas Conservation Committee, and is free to attend ($5 suggested donation).
Kloster, a nature photographer, will share historical and current photos of Mount Hood trails. Kruger, executive director of Trailkeepers of Oregon, will lead a discussion of maintenance and future plans for the trail system.
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