July 29th – September 2nd
Thursdays – Sundays at 7 pm
“Beware the Ides of March!”
Julius Caesar returns from war, facing new challenges to his rule. Brutus will stop at nothing – even assassination – for the good of the republic. But do things get better, or worse? Will Caesar’s ghost be avenged? See this classic political thriller set in a modern world, showing the power and problem of the mob mentality, and how far people will go to rule a nation.
Written by William Shakespeare
Directed by Richard Farrell
Rating: T for Teen
Julius Caesar has returned from war with Pompey, his triumph celebrated by joyful Romans, with the exception of a few who fear that Caesar’s power may be becoming to great. One of these few, Cassius, jealous of Caesar’s power, convinces his noble friend Brutus that the people wish to make Caesar an absolute ruler and that assassination is their only option. Brutus, believing this the best course for the salvation of the republic of Rome, agrees and they gather a group of conspirators to attempt the deed.
Caesar’s wife Calpurnia, having dreams that prophesy Caesar’s death, convinces him not to attend the senate meeting on the Ides of March. Caesar, having been previously warned of this date by a Soothsayer, agrees to stay home with his nervous wife and informs Decius Brutus that he will not attend. Decius Brutus, unknown to Caesar, is one of the conspirators and re-interprets Calpurnia’s dream as a positive one, eventually convincing Caesar to go to the Senate house. Once there, the conspirators rise together and slay him.
Marc Antony, a loyal supporter of Caesar, asks Brutus to be allowed to speak in Caesar’s funeral. Brutus allows him to do so, but only after he himself speaks. Brutus tells the people of his love of Caesar, but of his greater love of Rome and sways the people into believing that Caesar’s assassination was the best course for Rome. Antony, however, is able to sway the people the other way and they rebel against the conspirators, splitting Rome into two warring factions.
Octavius and Marc Antony war against Cassius and Brutus, slaying anyone believed to be involved in the conspiracy against Caesar. Cassius, mistakenly believing that they have lost a major battle, commits suicide. Brutus, having been visited by the ghost of Caesar on the battlefield, realizes that the battle is lost and runs onto his own sword, praising Caesar to the last. Marc Antony, Octavius and Lepidus form a triumverate to rule the new Rome.
The Peninsula Backstage episode about Silicon Valley Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar is now online! The full episode can be found here: https://vimeo.com/175445663 and will also be COMING SOON TO A TELEVISION NEAR YOU! Keep an eye out on Media Center’s TV stations for multiple airings in Palo Alto, East Palo Alto, Atherton, Menlo Park and Stanford.
Larry is happy to be returning to the Sanborn Stage following his performance in SVS’s 2015 Tempest (Prospero) and directing last season’s Antony and Cleopatra. Some of his other roles at SVS include Mr. Bennett (Pride and Prejudice), Francisco (Tempest 2007); and, Ghost of Hamlet’s father (Hamlet). Larry would like to dedicate his performance to Joe Barra, may he rest in peace, and John Rutski who saved my buttocks last season.
Nick is thrilled to make his Silicon Valley Shakespeare debut!! Regional credits include: The Beard of Avon (Santa Cruz Shakespeare), The Kid Thing (NCTC), The Liar (Western Stage), Super Villain (The Pear Theatre, SVSTA standout), She Loves Me (Foothill Music Theatre), Coney Island Christmas, Amadeus, The Elephant Man (City Lights) Swift Justice (Tabard Theatre Company). Favorite roles include Benedick (Much Ado About Nothing) and Antipholus of Syracuse (Comedy of Errors). He has also appeared in the independent film “The Biggest Game in Town” which releases this summer.
Doll has been with Silicon Valley Shakespeare since its first production, appearing as Feste in Twelfth Night (1999). Since then you may have seen her as Beatrice in Much Ado About Nothing, Lady M in Macbeth, the Chorus in Henry V, or most recently as Antonia in The Tempest at SJSU. Doll has a BA in English from USCB and a Masters from SJSU where she emphasized Renaissance Drama.
Gabriel A. Ross
This is Gabriel’s first appearance with SVShakespeare. He grew up in this area and has performed with Renegade Theatre and Festival Theatre Ensemble in the past. He appeared with Jewel Theatre in Santa Cruz in 2015. This year he has been working with CTC in their young audience series. He has performed with numerous other Bay Area theatres in San Francisco and the East Bay. He earned an MFA from GWU/Shakespeare Theatre Company. Some of his previous classical roles include Edgar in King Lear, Lennox in Macbeth, Elbow in Measure for Measure, Saturninus in Titus Andronicus, Torvald in Doll’s House, and Charles in Saint Joan.
Metellus Cimber, Cobbler, Volumnius
Nicholas is thrilled to be returning to Silicon Valley Shakespeare in this production! Recently seen in SVS free touring production of Love’s Labour’s Lost (Dumain). Other past shows with SVS include Antony and Cleopatra (Mardian), Othello, The Tempest, Tartuffe and Pride and Prejudice. Recently graduated from Jose State University with a degree in Theater where he was seen in their production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Snug) and Foothill College’s production of Cymbeline (Caius Lucius). Works as a teaching artist teaching theater to youth around the bay area with the San Francisco Shakespeare Festival and Audacity Performing Arts Project.
Joel A. S. Butler
Joel is glad to be back at SV Shakes, he was Thyreus in last year’s Antony and Cleopatra. Previous roles include Sir Studley in Once Upon a Mattress, Jacob Marley in A Christmas Carol, Radioman Harold Bride in Titanic, and Gus in It’s Only a Play at Stage1 and Capt. Whitaker in A Few Good Men, Radioman in Diary of Anne Frank, Potter in It’s a Wonderful Life, Max in Lend Me a Tenor, and Monster in Frankenstein at Broadway West. He thanks his husband for the love and support.
Calpurnia, Octavious’ Servant
April is glad to be back for another fantastic summer with SVS. Recent roles include Sonya (Uncle Vanya, Pear Theatre), Olivia ( Shakespeare in Hollywood, SVS), Miranda (The Tempest, SVS), Desdemona (Othello, Iowa Shakespeare Experience), Ophelia (Hamlet, Little Apple Creek Theatre) and Viola (Twelfth Night, Drake University). She would like to thank her friends, and family for their constant love, humor, and support.
Philippi Messenger, Servant, Ensemble
Carla is ecstatic to take the stage again with SVS! Carla is a West Valley College student who loves to perform. Recent credits include The Odyssey, She Kills Monsters, a staged reading of The Vagina Monologues, and SVS’s Love’s Labour’s Lost. In her free time, she can be found having old movie marathons. She hopes you enjoy the show!
Ivette is delighted to be working on her first show with Silicon Valley Shakespeare. She was last seen in I And You (Caroline) at City Lights Theater Company where she has worked on The Elephant Man (Duchess/Ensemble), Truce: A Christmas Wish from the Great War (Clara Krieger), Coney Island Christmas (Evie Slotnick) and Amadeus (Ensemble). She was also in Epic Immersive’s Matthew Briar and the Age of Resurrection (Isabela Martinez) at History San Jose. Ivette is a graduate of the Foothill Theatre Conservatory and serves as the Casting and Administrative Assistant for City Lights Theater Company.
Young Cato, Ensemble
While in the grand scheme of things he is naught but a babe, Carl hopes to one day make an impression on the world. Or at least his audience. He is glad to have this opportunity, as he has only been acting for a little under 2 years exclusively at his school. He also wishes that he could write this in the 1st person, but knows that that isn’t really an option. Hopefully, talking in the 3rd person in bios will not start to move into Carl’s regular speaking habits.
Carpenter, Antony’s Servant, Antony’s Soldier
This will be Keenan’s forth Summer spent working with SVS on the Sanborn Stage. His previous roles include Daryl in Shakespeare in Hollywood and Eros in Antony and Cleopatra. He’s excited to be treading the deck once more in this year’s Julius Caesar. When not on stage, Keenan can be found building set pieces, writing, and walking in the woods.
Soothsayer, Cinna the Poet, Clitus
Barbara is thrilled to debut with SVS in her first Shakespearean role. With a B.A. in English, she once read every play by the Bard in a single semester. Now she manages a technical writing team when she is not performing in local theater. Favorite recent roles: Prudy, Hairspray; Electra, Gypsy (South Bay Musical Theatre); Mrs. Dubose, To Kill a Mockingbird (Hillbarn Theatre); Andrew McNair, all-female 1776 (Tabard Theater); and Roz, 9 to 5 (West Valley Light Opera).
Casca, Lepidus, Antony Soldier 1
Roger first worked at SVS last year as Max Reinhardt along with the terrific cast of Shakespeare in Hollywood… He is a printed circuit board designer who graduated from UC Santa Cruz long ago. His past roles include Geoffrey in The Lion In Winter, Malvolio in Twelfth Night, Jaques in As You Like It, Banquo in Macbeth, Pseudolus in A Funny Thing Happened On The Way To The Forum, and Sergeant of Police in Pirates of Penzance..
Josie Burgin Lawson
Murellus, Popillius Lena, Titinius
Josie is pleased to be working with SVS in Julius Caesar, her second California show, after Death Takes a Holiday with Tabard Theatre. Favorite Georgia roles include Polonius in Hamlet, Vivian Bearing in Wit, Virginia Woolf in Suicide Manual, Nat in Rabbit Hole and multiple performances with Atlanta Shakespeare Company. Josie received her B.A. in Acting from Loretto Heights College in Denver, Co. Love and extreme gratitude to my wonderful husband, Skip Huffman.
Dana makes her Sanborn Park debut in Julius Caesar, having appeared as The Princess of France in SVS’s Love’s Labour’s Lost this summer and Solinus in The Comedy of Errors in 2015. Favorite past roles include Arlene in Rose’s Dilemma (Limelight Actors Theater); Mindy in “NORMALPRACTICE” (Ovation Pictures); Helena in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, and Trinculo in The Tempest (California Theatre Center). She was nominated for Best Actress for her role in “It’s About Time” (Dragon Farm Productions, San Jose 48-Hour Film Project 2015) and holds a BFA from Tisch School of the Arts.
Octavius, Flavius, Artemidorus
Kevin is very excited for his first season with SVS. Some of his favorite roles include: Chremes in Assembly Women (Foothill Theatre), Watson in The Hound of the Baskervilles (Pittsburg Community Theater), Oberon/Theseus in A Midsummer Night’s Dream and Hamlet in Hamlet (East Bay Shakespeare). Kevin holds a B.A. in Drama with a Performance Emphasis from San Francisco State University. Aside from his passion for Shakespeare and the Theatre, Kevin is also a writer. You can check out his writing adventures at scofieldstreet.com
Spencer is thrilled to be invited back to SVS, after appearing as Jack Warner last season in Shakespeare in Hollywood. Other recent roles include Mr. van Daan in The Diary of Anne Frank, Markinson in A Few Good Men, and Drummond in Inherit the Wind. Spencer received his theatre training at Studio A.C.T. in San Francisco.
Wei-Jung Rachel Tsai
Rachel has acted in Multiplex and Working, the musical, at school. Off campus, her favorite roles include Peter Quince (A Midsummer Night’s Dream – Theatre Core) and Zhao (Chinglish – Nevada Theater). She’s also acted in many independent films as well. She worked in B.I.G. Artists & Productions back in Taiwan doing voiceover for commercials and films, and later on has pursued her MFA in Acting in Academy of Arts University.
Decius Brutus, Messala
Hair and Makeup Designer
Delighted to return for her 10th season, Melissa’s SVS credits include Comedy of Errors (Dromio of Syracuse, 2015 Theatre Bay Area Awards Finalist), Othello (Emilia), Much Ado… (Hero), and Tempest (Ariel, 2007). Credits elsewhere include Tigers Be Still (Sherry) at City Lights Theater Company, How to Succeed… (Miss Jones) and Flower Drum Song (Helen Chao) at West Valley Light Opera, and Manon Lescaut (Fanciulla) at West Bay Opera. Since receiving her B.A. in Theatre from SJSU, Melissa also moonlights as a makeup designer/artist (SVS, Pixar, Disney Channel UK, Opera San Jose), and in a previous life, “daylighted” as a children’s theatre teacher/director.
Richard has performed in the Bay Area with American Conservatory Theatre, Berkeley Repertory Theatre, San Jose Repertory Theatre, Marin Theatre Company, TheatreWorks, Center Repertory Theatre, Shakespeare Santa Cruz, Word For Word and The San Francisco Opera. For twelve years he was a company member of the Oregon Shakespeare Festival and performed for five seasons with The Alabama Shakespeare Festival, where he was an associate artist. He has performed in theatres throughout the country including Yale Repertory Theatre, Milwaukee Repertory Theatre, The Cleveland Playhouse, Seattle Repertory Theatre, The Alliance Theatre Company, A Contemporary Theatre and off Broadway with The Pearl Theatre Company.
Kimberly is thrilled to be working on her first show with SVS! She has stage managed numerous productions for City Lights Theater Co., Dragon Productions, and Foothill College. Kimberly is a proud graduate of the Foothill Theatre Conservatory and holds a B.A. in Theatre Arts with a performance emphasis form San Francisco State University. In addition to stage managing, Kimberly is also an actor and director.
Drew Benjamin Jones
Julius Caesar is Drew’s fourth show with SVS, previously appearing on stage in Antony and Cleopatra, The Tempest, and Taming of the Shrew. Drew graduated with a BA in Theatre Arts at San Jose State University and was awarded the Hal Todd Award for Excellence in Acting. Some of his favorite roles include Caleb in The Whipping Man, Malvolio in Twelfth Night, and Seymour in Little Shop of Horrors. Thanks you, SVS!
John is happy to be back with SVS for another season. He was last at SVS for the 2014 season, where he lit Othello, and Pride and Prejudice, as well as the 2013 season of Romeo and Juliet, and The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (Abridged). John is the current lecturer in Lighting design at San Jose State University, where he Lit The Great Gatsby, and A Midsummer Nights Dream. John Holds a BA in technical Theater from San Jose State University, and MFA in Lighting design from The University of Washington.
Ron is currently the resident scenic designer for City Lights Theater Company in San Jose and has been designing scenery in the Bay Area for the last 20 years. His most recent work for SVS was last summer’s productions of Shakespeare in Hollywood and Antony and Cleopatra. He has been nominated for three TBA Outstanding Scenic Design Awards and received the award for his design of Los Altos Stage Company’s production of Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf. Most recently, he received the Artist Laureate award from SV Creates honoring his design work in and around Silicon Valley.
Melissa received her B.A in technical theatre with an emphasis on costume design from San Francisco State University. Production there included Chess, A Streetcar Named Desire, Barber of Seville, Spring Awakening, and Tartuffe. Other works includes References to Salvador Dali Make me Hot, Wallflower, and La Llorona. She recently costumed West Side Story and Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde for City Lights Theatre as well as Death of A Salesman for Palo Alto Players. She is the resident assistant costumer for Tabard Theatre where she costumed Miracle on 34th Street, Swift Justice, I Do! I Do! and Crowns. She joins Silicon Valley Shakespeare Co in their modern production of Julius Caesar.
Assistant Stage Manager
Kiera is ecstatic to be back for her second season with SVS! Last year, she worked as an intern in hair and makeup and scenic crew, and served as wardrobe manager for The Comedy of Errors. Currently, she is working as production manager on The Sound of Music at her high school. As a graduating senior from Notre Dame High School, she isn’t sure what’s next for her, but she’s excited to be working on her favorite Shakespeare show over the summer.
Christina returns for her fifth season with SVS. Recent Bay Area work includes prop designing for Los Altos Stage Company’s production of Catch 22 and City Lights Theater Company’s production of Tigers Be Still. She also serves as a resident Stage Manager for Red Barn Production’s Great Dickens Christmas Fair. Christina earned her B.A. in Theatre Arts from San Jose State University.
Prior to arriving in the Bay Area Phil toured the UK and Europe with pop bands Dead on TV and The Bad Robots as well as producing records, and composing for stage/screen (Narcotic Narration, The Hamlet Machine, The Ballad of Jake, Lily and Clara). He has worked with Play Cafe on their Musical Cafe showcase, Six Monsters and Texting with All Terrain Theatre, and Catch 22 with Los Altos Stage Co. He also performs with BATS Improv and Un-Scripted Theatre Co as an improvising accompanist. He studied the infamous BA Performing Arts course at Middesex University, London.
Technical Internship Supervisor
This is Louis’ fourth year working at Sanborn and his second leading SVS’s massively successful internship program. Louis is also the Founder of The Audacity Performing Arts Project where his team produces 10-15 productions a year in schools where performing arts opportunities don’t exist. The best thing about Louis is his daughter and his wife.
Jarku Tang Virtanen
Returning for his third season with SVS, Jarku is delighted to electrify the parks of San Jose, Saratoga, and San Mateo once more. In addition to his place in the SVS family, Jarku is the resident lighting designer of Palo Alto’s Cubberley Community Theatre and the master electrician of West Bay Opera. He is also an ensemble member of the Renegade Theatre Experiment and is passionate about the company’s upcoming resurrection.
Sound Board Operator
Amy is beyond excited to be back at SVS this year! Last season, she worked as a fill-in sound and lighting board op for both Antony and Cleopatra and Shakespeare in Hollywood. She has actively participated in her school’s performing arts department, with credits including The Sound of Music (Head of Marketing), The King Stag (Stage Manager), Peter Pan (Assistant Stage Manager), and acting credits in both Medea and Macbeth.
About Julius Caesar
How long is the performance?
Julius Caesar runs approximately two hours and thirty minutes, including intermission.
What time are the performances?
All performances of Shakespeare in Sanborn Park begin at 7pm.
How long do the plays run?
Sanborn Park has a curfew requiring all participants (audience, performers, and staff) to leave the park by 10 pm. Therefore, all performances end at or before 9:30 pm.
How much are tickets?
Tickets for Shakespeare in Sanborn Park are $22, with discounts available for students, seniors, and SVS members. Kids 17 years of age attend for FREE, with a paid adult admission. Although children attend for free, they are still required to reserve a ticket so that we can guarantee their seat availability. Prices include online ticketing fees. No hidden fees!
Where can I buy tickets?
Tickets for all productions are available here. Due to the limited capacity of the space, we recommend purchasing tickets in advance. All ticket holders need to check in with at the Box Office upon arrival. Online Ticket holders will be asked to present their online confirmations to receive physical tickets. People purchasing tickets at the park can pay with cash, Visa, Mastercard, or a check made out to Silicon Valley Shakespeare.
What is the parking situation?
Parking at Sanborn Park is $6 per vehicle. There is very little light in the parking lots after performances, so you might consider bringing a small flashlight.
Is the seating reserved?
Seating in Sanborn Park is available on a first-come, first-served basis. The house opens for seating at approximately 6:30pm, though SVS members get earlier access. At that time, you can claim your seats with a blanket and then continue to enjoy a picnic in the park.
All seating consists of gray folding chairs with padded seats and backs.
Will there be food available at the show?
We have a well-stocked concessions stand where you can purchase wine, water, snacks, cookies, candy, and both cold and hot beverages, perfect for complementing a picnic you bring for before the performance.
Can I drop my child off at the park and pick him or her up after the play?
Children must be supervised at all times. SVS asks that at least one adult be present for every six children in attendance. If you choose to drop a teenager off, note that Sanborn Park closes for entry at sunset and you cannot drive into the park later to retrieve your child. Cellular phone service in the park is very limited, so your child will not be able to reach you if they wish to leave early. Silicon Valley Shakespeare is not responsible for any child left unattended.
Is Shakespeare in the Park a dress-up affair?
Not at all! The performance is outdoors in a park where the terrain is primarily dirt and gravel. We recommend wearing shoes that let you walk safely to and from the theatre (high heels are not a good choice). The weather can change quickly, so we recommend that you bring something warm to put on later in the evening. If you bring/wear a hat we request that it be one that won’t obstruct someone else’s view.
What about dogs?
Well-socialized dogs on a leash are welcome, but we ask owners to choose seats on the left side of the audience, closest to the creek. This lets people with allergies or fear of dogs to keep a suitable distance. Exceptions can be made for qualified service dogs.
Are the plays appropriate for children?
We pride ourselves on providing entertainment for the entire family. Due to graphic content inherent in many of Shakespeare’s works, we recommend parents familiarize themselves with the plays and determine if they are appropriate for your particular child. To assist parents we have provided a rating system (see the Family Rating Page).
Can we bring a picnic?
Of course! There are several areas in the park to enjoy a picnic. If you come early to picnic, we recommend you have someone line up 30-45 minutes before the performance to reserve seats, then return to finish your picnic. Peterson Grove, though conveniently located, is not available to our patrons. Sanborn Park has provided several picnic tables just down the hill from the theatre entrance, marked as The Shady Grove, for your convenience.
What are those cool thrones in the back of the theatre? How can I sit there?
Royal Seating is an exclusive SVS experience! Extra-comfortable seats, a private seating area, a designated usher pre-show and at intermission – this is the lap of luxury for your evening’s entertainment.
Available primarily to members of our Royal Court, though some are available for purchase at some performances. You can become a member of our Royal Court, or ask about upgrading at the Box Office if you see those seats are empty.
Will SVS pass the hat at Sanborn Park?
SVS does not pass the hat at ticketed performances. However, if you wish to make a donation to continue to support Shakespeare in the Park, and to help us keep it free for kids, there will be a donation basket in the concession area. Checks can be made out to Silicon Valley Shakespeare.
Julius Caesar – T for Teen
This production will contain elements of violence which might give some parents pause. Parents who are curious about the content of this play can read a version that’s very similar to our script here.
About the Family Rating System
Silicon Valley Shakespeare makes theatrical classics enjoyable and accessible to as wide an audience as possible. Families love to attend our plays, and we’re proud to have introduced thousands of young people to the Bard. To assist parents and guardians in assessing which of our plays might be right for their children, we offer a Parental Advisory that features a general rating followed by a more nuanced recommendation and description of the content. Our assessment can’t fit every family, so we offer a link to the actual text of our plays whenever possible so that parents can make their own decision. Our ratings are:
E for Everyone — Suitable for all audiences.
PG for Parental Guidance — Appropriate for most audiences under 13, but we recommend that parents inform themselves as to the content of the play and its themes, and exercise their best judgment for their individual child.
T for Teen — Might be inappropriate for audiences under 13. Parents of younger children are welcome to attend with their children, but we recommend that they prepare for any questions their children may have about some of the more sophisticated and mature content and themes of the play and its particular presentation.
M for Mature — Not recommended for audiences under 17.
About very young children: Infants and toddlers are always welcome at all outdoor plays. We’re thrilled to offer newer parents an opportunity to enjoy live theatre! We ask that at least one parent or guardian of these tiny theatergoers be prepared to take a break with them out of earshot of the theatre space if they become upset or very vocal.
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