Measure for Measure 
by William Shakespeare I directed by James Noel Hoban
sponsored by Christine & David Heckman 

With a unique brew of laughter and darkness, Shakespeare’s tale of impassable moral dilemmas, religious hypocrisy, and he said/she said examines the complex relationships between those in power and those they govern. The quality of mercy is strained to the point of breaking in this dark comedy about the corruption of justice and authority…and the true nature of love and mercy.

Schedule
Thursday, July 15 at 7:30 PM (Preview Night)
Friday, July 16 at 7:30 PM (Opening Night)
Saturday, July 24 at 7:30 PM
Sunday, August 1 at 7:00 PM
Thursday, August 5 at 1:00 PM (Outside Cumston Hall)
Thursday, August 12 at 1:00 PM
Friday, August 13 at 7:30 PM
Wednesday, August 18 at 7:30 PM (*Winery Wednesday)
Sunday, August 22 at 1:00 PM (Closing Performance)

 

*Winery Wednesdays will take place outside at WillowsAwake at 10 Leeds Junction Rd. Leeds, ME 04263

Want to find out more about TAM’s production of the Measure for Measure? View the Pre-Show Discussion video on our YouTube channel to get an inside look at the making and importance of Measure for Measure by William Shakespeare. Watch now!

Production Team

James Noel Hoban
Director
Dan Bilodeau
Set Designer
Jen Fok
Lighting Designer
Michelle Handley
Costume Designer
Julia Jennings
Asst. Stage Manager
Aaron Louque
Stage Manager

Melissa Nathan
Props 

Simon Marland
Sound Designer
   

Cast

Sarah Goldman
Francisca/ Messenger/ Friar Peter
Henry Hetz
Angelo/ Provost 1

Charence Higgins
Escalus/ Friar Thomas/       Provost 3

Amber McNew
Isabella
Sophia Mobbs
Juliet/ Pompey/ Boy
Nathan M. Ramsey
Duke Vincentio/ Gentleman
Michael Rosas
Lucio/ Abhorson

Reece Santos
Claudio/ Barnadine

Casey Turner
Mistress Overdone/ Mariana/ Provost 2

From the Director

The western prairie, 1880. The town of Vienna, Montana. An isolated settlement struggling with the tensions between civil law and religious morality, human failing and divine absolutism. A time and place where power and the fates of others can be concentrated in the hands of one man, and where the character of that man determines all.

In Shakespeare’s Measure for Measure, under the guise of comedy, vital concerns of power and morality are explored. Fearing he has been too lenient with his people, Duke Vincentio places his authority in the hands of his deputy Lord Angelo, hoping that a new, interim ruler with a reputation for scrupulous morality can impose a stricter regime. Vincentio has put forth he needs to go abroad for diplomatic purposes, but his true intent is to observe in secret the effects of Angelo’s rule over the people; a stress test of government in effect. The first focus of Angelo’s zeal is a young gentleman named Claudio, who having made his fiancee Juliet pregnant before wedlock, must suffer death for his indiscretion. When Claudio’s sister, the novice nun Isabella, is importuned to plead to Angelo for her brother’s life, the clash of these two conflicting views of Christian law and morality takes an unexpected and decidedly human turn. Of particular relevance in this #metoo era is Angelo’s willingness to wield his power to bend Isabella to his will and  publicly call into question the veracity of her word.

The foundation for this production is a 90 minute version I directed for TAM’s 2020 Shakespeare in Maine Communities virtual education tour last fall. To be able to revisit and expand the production with a mostly new cast is a rare creative opportunity I’m truly honored by. Last August, we started the process on Zoom, rehearsed in my backyard for a couple of weeks, then safely mounted and filmed the production in Cumston Hall. It was, in its own modest way, a revolutionary gesture of hope, to make theatre in the thick of a pandemic with no vaccine in sight. The concept of isolation pervaded the endeavor. The isolation of the setting for the play, the isolation of our creative production bubble, the isolation of the students it would eventually reach via streaming in their homes and masked, distanced classrooms. Now, as we begin to gather and create again, It is my hope that in life and in art we can retain the lessons of our time apart, value our common humanity and vulnerability, and interact with a greater degree of mercy and empathy.

At the heart of Measure for Measure lies the lesson of a singularly tolerant biblical passage: judge not lest ye be judged. Always suspect of absolutists, Shakespeare brings his most zealous characters to a humble and humane resolution. Vienna, seemingly impervious to attempts to impose a perfect moral order, emerges as an imperfect place where it’s people can breathe free. Here’s to all of us breathing free again.