The Conservatory at Shakespeare & Company will offer a winter production of Cymbeline, featuring Shakespeare and Company founder and Director of Training, Dennis Krausnick, in the title role. Performances will be on December 16 and 17 2010. Dennis Krausnick is seen above in a photo by Kevin Sprague, taken for his Lear Project several years ago.
The Story of Cymbeline
A princess who longs to be with her true love, a contriving stepmother, and a wise king who is led astray; Cymbeline was listed in the First Folio as a tragedy, but is now classified by many scholars as a romance, sharing this distinction with a handful of Shakespeare’s late plays such as Pericles for their mystical and redemptive final acts. Written by Shakespeare in 1609, Cymbeline plumbs the depths of family dysfunction as tensions grow when King Cymbeline’s daughter, Imogen, marries the modest Posthumus instead of Cloten, the son of her stepmother Queen. Meanwhile, the vindictive and divisive Queen conspires to murder Imogen and her father Cymbeline, thus paving the road for Cloten to take the throne. Posthumus is consequently banished by the King and Imogen runs away—in true Shakespearean fashion—disguised as a boy.
Cymbeline learns of his wife’s murderous conspiracy and longs for the return of his beloved daughter. In her wanderings, Imogen finds her two brothers, who were kidnapped at birth. Fate continues to align the stars of Cymbeline, Imogen, and Posthumus, ultimately leading to a long-awaited reconciliation. Beyond the convoluted plot, Cymbeline is a story in which the characters are subjected to the harsh trials of fate, but ultimately their faith and goodwill lead to a redemptive reunion.