A very traditional Shrew
Woodland Opera House Theatre340 Second St.
Woodland, CA 95695
The curtain rises—a real curtain!—to reveal a hyperactive, colorful, old-school mounting of the durable battle of the sexes, Shakespeare’s The Taming of the Shrew. The costumes hint at Italy, circa the 16th century, and director Rodger McDonald goes to extraordinary lengths to work in physical antics (à la The Three Stooges): People run on and off the stage, ears get twisted, doors slam and there’s usually a “secondary” visual subplot percolating in the background. Leads Jeff Kean (as Petruchio; Kean’s also the company’s artistic director) and Bevin Bell-Hall (Katherina) have done Shakespeare before, and they’re good. It’s retro fun—the way a good community company might have done Shakespeare about 100 years ago, in a theater very much like this.