The Theatrical Masterpiece that is Shakespeare in Love

Maddy Snyder, Staff Editor/ Writer

The theater department’s production of Shakespeare in Love was phenomenal. 

November 13 marked the closing night of Zachary High’s Theater Department’s production of Shakespeare in Love. The play follows William Shakespeare (Ethan Stagg) as he wrote the renowned Romeo and Juliet. At the start of the play, Shakespeare is utterly uninspired, but the charm of young Viola De Lesseps (Andre’a Condol) soon changes that. Viola has a love for the theater, but, as a woman, she is prohibited from stepping foot on the stage. Her solution: impersonate a man. Over the course of the play, Shakespeare discovers Viola’s secret and the two fall in love. But disaster strikes when Viola’s owner… I mean, fiancé… learns of the couple’s romance. During the last fleeting scenes of the play, the audience witnesses an early feminist taking the stage, star-crossed lovers torn apart, and a writer inspired to create the greatest love story in history. 

The cast brought this fictional tale to life with the perfect balance of comedic relief and drama. Comedic characters like Philip Henslowe (Brennan Bankston), a debt-ridden theater owner, Hugh Fennyman (Kenny Collins), Henslowe’s loaner with an undiscovered love for the theater, and John Webster (Sophia Hogan), a socially awkward young boy desperate for a part in Shakespeare’s play, cue belly-laughs from audience members. On the other hand, the death of Kit Marlowe (John Browning), a wise and loyal friend to Shakespeare, the rage of Lord Wessex (Andon Mounts), Viola’s betrothed, and Shakespeare and Viola’s inevitable ending provoke a depth of emotion from audience members. Also, the powerful presence of the Queen of England (Ma’at Firven) added a level of intelligent comedy to the play. I was truly impressed by this department’s ability to portray this story in such a well-rounded, emotionally moving, and thoughtful way.