Shakespeare Theatre Company Season Will Include Works by Branden Jacobs-Jenkins, James Baldwin, Lauren Gunderson | Playbill

Regional News Shakespeare Theatre Company Season Will Include Works by Branden Jacobs-Jenkins, James Baldwin, Lauren Gunderson A new musical by Emma Rice will also be part of incoming Artistic Director Simon Godwin’s 2019–2020 season at the Washington, D.C., venue.
Branden Jacobs-Jenkins Marc J. Franklin

Simon Godwin, the incoming artistic director of Shakespeare Theatre Company, has announced his inaugural season at the Washington, D.C., company.

The Bard remains at the center of STC’s mission, with two Shakespeare works in the 2019–2020 lineup, both directed by Godwin: a reimagining of his acclaimed production of Timon of Athens starring Kathryn Hunter, and a new production of Much Ado About Nothing. Godwin chose Much Ado, in part, as an acknowledgment of the leadership of current Artistic Director Michael Kahn, who will retire at the end of the 2018–2019 season.

READ: Simon Godwin Named New Artistic Director of D.C.'s Shakespeare Theatre Company

Simon Godwin Joseph Marzullo/WENN

“Michael inaugurated the Lansburgh Theatre with a production of Much Ado,” Godwin said in a statement, “and I think it’s fitting, for my first season to begin here too with this celebration of love and hope and humor.”

The remaining four shows in the season are by playwrights who will be produced for the first time on STC’s stages: James Baldwin (The Amen Corner, directed by Whitney White, tackling the role of the church in the African-American community), Branden Jacobs-Jenkins (Everybody, which remixes the medieval morality play into an experiment of wit and emotion), Emma Rice (Romantics Anonymous, a new musical by Rice, who also directs, Christopher Dimond, and Michael Kooman about two timid chocolatiers), and Lauren Gunderson (Peter Pan, a world-premiere adaptation of the J.M. Barrie classic, directed by Alan Paul).

Gunderson's Peter Pan is part of Godwin’s new initiative, a three-year undertaking to produce family-friendly theatre during the holidays.

“As a father,” Godwin explains, “I would love to make theatre that we can all bring our extended family to; big, exciting shows that everyone can enjoy.”

Gunderson added, “It’s going to be inclusive. It’s going to put girls at the center of the story, as well as boys. It’s going to be something for all kinds of audiences, something that can bring families together.”

The 2019 Free for All production is Michael Kahn's take on Shakespeare's Hamlet, to be directed by Craig Baldwin.

Casting and performance dates will be announced at a later time. Click here for additional season details.

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