‘Julius Caesar’ to be staged at Flathead schools

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Montana Shakespeare in the Schools is bringing its tour of “Julius Caesar” to the Flathead Valley in October and November during a 10-week tour this fall.

During its 26th season the theater troupe will perform for nearly 12,000 middle and high school students in communities throughout Montana and Wyoming. Several public performances will also be held.

Dates for local performances include:

• Oct. 29 –West Valley Middle School, Kalispell

• Oct. 30 –Kalispell Middle School, Kalispell

• Oct. 31 –Ronan High School, Ronan

• Nov. 14 –Columbia Falls High School, Columbia Falls

• Nov. 15 –Columbia Falls High School, Columbia Falls

• Nov. 16 –Polson High School, Polson

The is the first of two educational outreach programs offered during the academic year by Montana Shakespeare in the Parks, based at Montana State University. The tour will conclude in mid-December. Montana Shakes!, a program designed specifically for elementary school children, will tour from late February to mid-May.

To accommodate schools’ scheduling needs, productions are trimmed to 80 minutes. Each is accompanied by a tailor-made set of workshops related to the play. Kevin Asselin, executive artistic director of Montana Shakespeare in the Parks, directs the production.

“In ‘Julius Caesar,’ Shakespeare reminds us that a lack of reason and inability to communicate can play a detrimental role in not only the collapse of government but also the collapse of relationships and the natural world,” Asselin said. “It is my hope these themes will resonate with our viewers and serve as a sobering reminder of the need for reasoned dialogue and mutual respect in culturally tumultuous times.”

Asselin said the goal of the troupe is to bring live, professional performances of Shakespeare’s plays to middle and high schools across Montana and Wyoming, emphasizing rural, underserved areas. Efforts are being made to make the performance and the workshops dovetail with social studies, history and civics classes around the region.

The professional eight-member cast that makes up the touring company have been chosen from national auditions.

For more information visit the website at shakespeareintheparks.org or call 406-994-3303.

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