Ben Johnson's Bartholmew Fair presented by New World School of the Arts College students

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Ben Johnson’s five-act comedy
Bartholmew Fair, to be presented by
The NWSA College Theater division
Wednesday, April 9 – Sunday, April 13
 
MIAMI—Written by famed English Renaissance dramatist Ben Jonson, Bartholmew Fair, a daring comedy set in 17th century  NWSA theater students Ashley Price, David Hemphill and Rachel Clark. England, will be presented by New World School of the Arts, when the production launches its five-day run, Wednesday, April 9 at 7:30 P.M. at the Louise O’ Gerritts Theatre, 25 N.E. 2nd Street downtown Miami. Additional performances will be Thursday, Friday and Saturday, April 10 – 12 at 7:30 PM; Sunday, April 13 at 2 P.M.  General admission is $12, students and seniors $5.
 
Presented by the larger theater companies that specialize in Shakespearean theater, this rendition of Bartholmew Fair, Directed by NWSA faculty Andrew Noble, highlights the artistic talent of 25 college sophomores, juniors and seniors. “Bartholmew Fair is an intricate production that challenges the students and invites them to explore the many layers of humanity. With a cast of outlandish characters who compete for the centre spot, the plot is comprised of multiple stories which are interwoven to create a rich and vivid portrait of life in London. It is as if a painting by Breughel has been brought to life by Robert Altman. At its core though, the play is about freedom of speech and the need to eradicate the censorship typical of the Elizabethan era and true even today. Through its colorful metaphors and clever use of character names, it humorously addresses corruption, intolerance, justice and extremism” stated Noble.
            
A visual and comedic feast, Bartholmew Fair premiered on October 31, 1614. Taking inspiration from one of London’s finest summer fairs, the dramatic piece explores the diversity of life in England during the mid seventeenth century and highlights its interpersonal relationships across all social classes. With an opening scene that, according to Noble “is in essence an invitation for the audience to search for the truth hidden below the surface in an attempt to become their own judges” Bartholmew Fair boasts a colorful set of characters and skewers hypocrisy by delving into issues that boldly address the social, political and religious climate of the era and today.
 
Theater and music theater students at NWSA hone their craft through acting technique, movement and speech classes, focusing on fundamentals of physical and emotional preparation. With performance at its core, training is based on the classical texts and the principles of drama as well as practical incursions into the contemporary and experimental edges of theater. Consequently, alumni are found performing on stage nationally and internationally and their talent and vision are recognized and highly regarded in the industry.
 
New World School of the Arts was created by the Florida Legislature as a center of excellence in the performing and visual arts, and is an educational partnership of Miami Dade County Public Schools, Miami Dade College and the University of Florida. Through its partnership with the University of Florida NWSA is able to grant Bachelor of Fine Arts and Bachelor of Music degrees.
 
For more information about the theater program at NWSA, please call (305) 237-3541 or visit www.mdc.edu/nwsa.                                                
 
Photo Caption: Left to right NWSA theater students Ashley Price, David Hemphill and Rachel Clark.