As You Like It
Written by William Shakespeare
Directed by Anna Antaramian
Summer - 2011

Act I
  Garden of Oliver’s House
Duke Frederick’s Court 
Forest of Arden
Duke Frederick’s Court
Oliver’s House
Forest of Arden
Duke Frederick’s Court
 Forest of Arden
10 minute intermission
Act II
The whole act takes place in the Forest of Arden

The play is set in a duchy in France, but most of the action takes place in a location called the 'Forest of Arden.'

Frederick has usurped the Duchy and exiled his older brother, Duke Senior. The Duke's daughter Rosalind has been permitted to remain at court because she is the closest friend and cousin of Frederick's only child, Celia. Orlando, a young gentleman of the kingdom who has fallen in love at first sight of Rosalind, is forced to flee his home after being persecuted by his older brother, Oliver. Frederick becomes angry and banishes Rosalind from court. Celia and Rosalind decide to flee together accompanied by the jester Touchstone, with Rosalind disguised as a young man and Celia disguised as a poor lady.

Rosalind, now disguised as Ganymede ("Jove's own page"), and Celia, now disguised as Aliena (Latin for "stranger"), arrive in the Arcadian Forest of Arden, where the exiled Duke now lives with some supporters, including "the melancholy Jaques," who is introduced to us weeping over the slaughter of a deer. "Ganymede" and "Aliena" do not immediately encounter the Duke and his companions, as they meet up with Corin, an impoverished tenant, and offer to buy his master's rude cottage.

Orlando and his servant Adam (a role possibly played by Shakespeare himself, though this story is apocryphal), meanwhile, find the Duke and his men and are soon living with them and posting simplistic love poems for Rosalind on the trees. Rosalind, also in love with Orlando, meets him as Ganymede and pretends to counsel him to cure him of being in love. Ganymede says "he" will take Rosalind's place and "he" and Orlando can act out their relationship.

The shepherdess Phebe, with whom Silvius is in love, has fallen in love with Ganymede (actually Rosalind), though "Ganymede" continually shows that "he" is not interested in Phebe. Touchstone, meanwhile, has fallen in love with the dull-witted shepherdess, Audrey, and tries to woo her, but eventually is forced to be married first. William, another shepherd, attempts to marry Audrey as well, but is stopped by Touchstone, who threatens to kill him "a hundred and 50 different ways".

Finally, Silvius, Phebe, Ganymede, and Orlando are brought together in an argument with each other over who will get whom. Ganymede says he will solve the problem, having Orlando promise to marry Rosalind, and Phebe promise to marry Silvius if she cannot marry Ganymede.

Orlando sees Oliver in the forest and rescues him from a lioness, causing Oliver to repent for mistreating Orlando (some directors treat this as a tale, rather than reality). Oliver meets Aliena (Celia's false identity) and falls in love with her, and they agree to marry. Orlando and Rosalind, Oliver and Celia, Silvius and Phebe, and Touchstone and Audrey all are married in the final scene, after which they discover that Frederick has also repented his faults, deciding to restore his legitimate brother to the dukedom and adopt a religious life. Jaques, ever melancholy, declines their invitation to return to the court preferring to stay in the forest and to adopt a religious life. Rosalind speaks an epilogue to the audience, commending the play to both men and women in the audience.

Shakespeare's Bumpkins and Courtiers

In As You Like It, when we meet Duke Senior, a man banished to the Forest of Arden by his usurping younger brother, we are given a spoken exchange that may be the most central statement to understanding Shakespeare's comedy. The Duke speaks one of the play's most cherished lines: "Sweet are the uses of adversity." He means that, unless he and his court had been ousted, they would never have known the full joys of country life. The Duke continues this idea by further extolling how good the Forest is as opposed to the pomp of court.

The Duke's courtier Amiens responds with a slightly court-like compliment:
        Happy is your Grace
        That can translate the stubbornness of fortune
        Into so quiet and so sweet a style.

The Duke answers Amiens with a suggestion that strikes a chord of ironic displacement:
        Come, shall we go and kill us venison?
        And yet it irks me the poor dappled fools,
        Being native burghers of this desert city
        Should in their own confines with forkéd heads
        Have their round haunches gored.

Another attendant courier responds and deepens the irony:
        Indeed, my lord,
        The melancholy Jaques grieves at that,
        And in that kind swears you do more usurp
        Than doth your brother that hath banished you.

Over the course of these twelve lines, Shakespeare clusters for us the ideas that animate the play's attitudes toward the traditional dichotomy 'of court vs. country or urban vs. pastoral. If Arden is wholesome and good, why does the Duke call it a 'desert city' and its native deer 'burghers,' city dwellers? Are the literal horns of the dappled fools' a metaphorical sneer at the deer being betrayed in their own  'confines'? And what about Jaques' grief and accusation that the Duke, like the Duke's younger brother, is also taking what does not belong to him? The 12 lines blur the traditional distinction that posits that the natural world-the Forest of Arden-is better and purer than the artificial world of the court, which is rife with betrayal and irrational orders of    exile. Shakespeare borrowed ideas from the Robin Hood literature that dates back several centuries before As You Like It, and that literary tradition allows for no blurring. The men in Sherwood Forest are an honest, affectionate, loyal and caring group of men and their families. The Robin Hood tradition makes the Forest almost Edenic, a paradise without strife. When opposed to the world of the court, Sherwood Forest is an alternative reality. There is no conscious blurring, but Shakespeare seems to have understood the necessity for ambiguity when invoking the Arcadian ideal.

That blurring runs like a long line of gold ore throughout the play. The most loyal and disloyal acts in the play occur at court: the abiding friendship between Celia and Rosalind was engendered and nurtured at court; the younger Duke usurped his older brother's power at court, spewed hatred and venom at Rosalind and Orlando and banished both. Similarly, for the sake of the court, Orlando's own brother Oliver betrays him in a move that shocks even the venomous, usurping Duke, who calls Oliver a 'villain.'
On the other hand, the world outside the court is filled with absurdity. Shakespeare parodies pastoral literary conventions in the bumpkinish persons of shepherds and shepherdesses and a vicar. However, one of those shepherds, Corin, matches wits with the wittiest of courtiers, Touchstone. In like regard, the shepherd Silvius manages to word his wooing far more poetically than Orlando, who infuses his poetry with literary learnedness that lacks both wit and urbanity.
As You Like It makes plain that we cannot take the traditional dichotomy between court and country at face value. Nor may we take traditional gender roles as static. When Rosalind becomes a man, she loses none of her womanly attributes and is loved in a masculine friendship with Orlando while being pursued by Phebe for attributes surprising in a man: his reds lips and cheeks, for example.
Perhaps, Rosalind explains the blurring of all these categories as an element of time:
Men are April when they woo, December when they wed; maids     are May when they are maids, but the sky changes when they     are wives.

Change is a function of time. When Jaques gives his seven stages of man speech, Shakespeare undermines any full and serious acceptance of the speech in just the way he undermines the Duke's sweetness of
adversity. Jaques claims that "one man in his time plays many parts." He enumerates those parts: the 'mewling' and 'puking' infant; the 'whining schoolboy'; the lover 'with a woeful ballad'; the soldier, 'quick in quarrel'; the magistrate, 'fat,' 'severe' and 'formal'; then the old man; and finally the elderly child "sans teeth, sans eyes, sans taste, sans every thing."

The center of Jaques speech is the constant self-interestedness of a person in each of the stages. But the speech is given in the context of Orlando saving his servant from starvation, Orlando not eating anything until his servant is fed first—this 80-year-old servant who gave the young Orlando his life's savings.

Shakespeare undermines Jaques' stages even though the play also shows how much they may be taken as true. Infants do mewl; schoolboys whine. But they cannot be reduced to a single attribute; nor can the virtues of country life simply offset the rigors of country life. The same may be said for the court. We must take each way of life as we like it.

Patrick McGuire,
English Dept., University of Wisconsin-Parkside
Orlando…………………………………..    Robert Babcock
Duke Senior……………………………..    John Baumeister
Touchstone………………………………    Clark Bender
Audrey…………………………………...    Lisa Cantwell
Rosalind……………………    …………...    Ellen Cribbs
Adam/Hymen...………………………...    Allen Davis
Phebe…………………………………...    Annie Dernbach
Amiens……….………………………….    Tim Duggan
Oliver...………………………………….    Keith Harkleroad
Celia……………………………………..    Jill Matel
Attendant to Duke Frederick.………….    Jenna Portenlanger       
Duke Frederick………………………….    John Portenlanger
Le Beau /Corin..……………………..….    Rand Ringgenberg
Charles/Jaques/ William……………….    Brian Rogers
Jaques…………………………………...    Steve Ruppel
Silvius…………………………………....    Patryk Szwankowski
Attendant to Duke Senior……………...    Luis Tubers

Production Staff______________
Director……………………..…………………..    Anna Antaramian
Stage Manager…………………………….......    Caitlin Varpness
Assistant Stage Manager……………………..    Monica Clark
Assistant Director………………………………    Sara Carranza
Scenic / Costume Designer……………...…...    Jessica Kuehnau
Light Designer……………………….…....…...    John Rodriguez
Technical Director………………………………    Alex Useted
Box Office Manager…………………………….    Donna Duraj
Theatre Bookkeeper……………………………    Joanne Cartalino
Theatre Manager………………………………..    Alexandra Wyrazik
Original Music…………………………………..    Tim Duggan
Light Board Operator……...……………..…….    Sabrine Muhlbeier
Running Crew…………………………………..    Patrice Agnant Twila York
Set Construction…….………………...………..Javier Chavez, Jesus Frutos, Jimmy Haritos,
Drazenka Mrkajic, Saba Mukhi, Yesenia Ortega, Lillie Prince, Antonio Tovar

Robert Babcock (Orlando) is thrilled to be performing again with the Stage Centre Theatre. Last seen at Stage Center as the bumbling and incompetent Detective Fix in November 2010's Around The World in 80 Days, Robert is excited to be back again with such a wonderful cast and crew. He wants everyone to know that it is a huge stretch for his acting abilities to play a young, handsome, strapping youth like Orlando in this show. Favorite past credits include MacBeth, The Laramie Project, The Women of Lockerbie, and Othello. A big thanks to all the friends and family for their continued love and support.

John Baumeister (Duke Senior) is very excited to be performing in his second production with the Stage Center Theater. His first performance was as Jensen in My Sister Eileen. It was there that he made many friends and grew very fond of working (if that is what you call it) with Anna. This production has proven to be exactly the same and he is very excited to be with such a wonderful cast. He would like to thank his amazing family (Mary, Griffin, Audrey, and Grace) for their love and support. They have allowed him to grow in many ways by the generous giving of THEIR time.  As always, he would like to thank his daughter Grace for getting him to jump in with both feet. John's mother Ruth Ann Baumeister passed away just as this production began. Because she so loved any and all theater he would like to dedicate his performances to her. As many knew her here, she will be with us sitting in the third row.

Clark Bender (Touchstone) is excited to be back at the Stage Center Theatre taking direction from the delightful Anna Antaramian. Prior Stage Center roles include Sandy in Hay Fever, Mr. Sherwood in My Sister Eileen and Stryver in A Tale of Two Cities. Clark also played veSIwIQ (Fezziwig) in last year’s Chicago premiere of Commedia Beauregard’s A Klingon Christmas Carol told in the Klingon language (!). Clark thanks the wonderful cast and crew for their inspiration and dedication; friends and family – especially B & L – for encouragement and support; and most of all his beloved wife Kim who makes it all possible by sharing him with his theater family

Lisa Cantwell (Audrey) is dizzy with excitement about having the privilege to work with this amazing cast and crew. She is currently a theatre instructor and director here at NEIU, where she received her Master’s degree in Communication, Media and Theatre. Recent acting credits include Myra in Hay Fever, Mrs. Sowerberry in Oliver, Rita in Lucky Stiff,      Titiana in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Miss Framer in Lettice and Lovage, and Miss Lynch in Grease. Thanks and thanks and thanks again to the exquisite Anna, to sweet Jessica and to John, my Tony. And, as always, to Monkey and B … I like it like you

Ellen Cribbs (Rosalind) is ecstatic to be working with the Stage Center again after performing the role of Judith Bliss in Hay Fever last summer. Ellen has recently performed in Blithe Spirit with First Folio Theatre and A Klingon Christmas Carol with Commedia Beauregard Theatre. She is also an ensemble member with Imagination Theater and the Director of Education for the Shakespeare All-Stars, an educational outreach program that provides Shakespeare's works to local schools. Thank you to Anna and the cast for a fantastic run, and to Charles and her family for all their love and support.

Allen Davis (Adam/Hymen) graduated with a Master's degree in Communication from Northeastern Illinois University. He has appeared in numerous productions here at the Stage Center Theatre, as well as working with the Red Orchid Theatre, August Ensemble, Fourth Wall, Marquee Theatre Company, and Thymely Theatre. Some of his favorite roles were Dr. Einstein in Arsenic and Old Lace, Gately in Pvt. Wars, and Dogberry in Much Ado About Nothing. Allen would like to take this time to thank everyone for their support and understanding. Enjoy the show.

Annie Dernbach (Phebe) is excited to be appearing on stage for the first time at Stage Center Theatre, after stage managing    Lucky Stiff and Vaudeville America! Annie recently completed the Teacher Certification Program at NEIU. After teaching Shakespeare during student teaching, she is very excited to be performing in one of his plays. Annie would like to thank her friends and family for their support, Lisa for the rides, Anna for the opportunity, and her boss for
being flexible once again.

Tim Duggan (Amiens) is an assistant professor in the department of Educational Inquiry and Curriculum Studies at NEIU, where he facilitates the Secondary Education Program and teaches English education courses. He is the former director of education and outreach at the Nebraska Shakespeare Festival, and over the past two years, he has conducted several teacher workshops for the Chicago Shakespeare Theater.  As a musician, Tim has recorded several CDs, including two collections primarily devoted to Shakespeare music. He is thrilled to be making his Stage Center debut.

Keith Harkleroad (Oliver) is in graduate school studying linguistics here at NEIU. He has recently been bitten by the acting bug and is loving it. He was last seen in Stage Center Theatre’s Around the World in 80 Days last fall and played the jester Truffaldino in this spring’s Children’s Theatre Workshop production of The Love For Three Oranges.

Jill Matel (Celia) is excited to be returning to the NEIU summer stage for her 3rd time and very excited to be trying out Shakespeare for her very 1st time.  A native of Milwaukee, she studied acting and dance at Barat College in Lake Forest and performs around Milwaukee and the Chicagoland area with various groups. Favorite roles include Nancy in Oliver, Roxy in Chicago, and Holly in Wedding Singer. Thank you to Anna for allowing her to flex her Shakespeare skills, a very special thank you to Ellen for helping her through the language with "the great heap of her knowledge!", and to the cast and crew for all their hard work. LU RJ!!

Jenna Portenlanger (Duke Frederick’s Servant) is an art major and music minor in her fourth year as a student at NEIU. She has an interest in acting, and has been taking theatre classes for the past two years. She was last seen at the Stage Center Theatre’s Children’s Theatre Workshop performance of The Love for Three Oranges and the main stage production of Bleacher Bums.

John Portenlanger (Duke Frederick) is a lifelong north-side Chicagoan. He received his BA in 1967 from an institution known to historians as Northeastern Illinois State College and his MA in Geography in 1973 from NEIU. After a career teaching at Chicago Public Schools, John retired in 2009 and returned to NEIU to begin taking courses “just for fun.” John wishes to thank Jenna for inspiring him with the idea that theatre classes can be fun and Rodney, Dan, and Chris for confirming that idea, and Anna for having faith in his ability. 

Rand Ringgenberg  (Le Beau/Corin)is making his Shakespearean debut with this production. However,  he has been seen recently at the Stage Center Theatre in Emma’s Child and Dead Man’s Cell Phone. Rand is a Communication, Media, and Theatre major here at NEIU and will be graduating in December. He is looking forward to his final semester this fall when he takes a break from acting and assumes the role of playwright, as two of his one act plays, O Come All Ye Faithful and The Gedanken Experiment, will be presented in the Studio Theatre in October.

Brian Rogers (Charles/William/Jaques) is genuinely excited to be making his debut at the Stage Center Theatre. He is currently an English major here at Northeastern Illinois University. Brian would like to express his gratitude to Anna Antaramian, a most estimable teacher and director. Brian wishes only the best for the cast and crew in their future endeavors. He would also like to thank his professors for their dedication and encouragement. Lastly, Brian would like to exclaim his love and thanks to his family and friends, especially to his wonderful girlfriend for her help and support.

Steve Ruppel (Jaques) is very excited to be returning to the Stage Center Theatre where he last appeared in Tania Richards’ Selecting Memory. Other stage credits include: Vincent Trumans’ The Observatory (A Viable Theatre Co.), Marring Terry (Nightingale Group), and The Straightenerouter (Rev. Theatre Co.).  Steve can be seen in the upcoming Independent film “The Mockingbird” written & directed by Rick Gawel which premiers in Chicago later this summer.

Patryk Szwankowski (Silvius) is very excited to be performing in As You Like It and working with proficient and talented actors going into his second year at Northeastern Illinois University. He has performed for two Children's Theatre Workshop classes (The Wolf and its Shadows, The Love For Three Oranges) while attending school. Majoring in Communications, Media, and Theatre, Patryk hopes to one day be a screenwriter or a playwright. He hopes to bring an added element to an already stunning cast. Thanks to all my friends and family for your support!

Luis Tubens (Duke Senior’s servant) is new to NEIU but not new to the stage. He is excited to have his first experience at NEIU’s Stage Center Theatre.

Artistic Staff Profiles______________

Anna Antaramian (Director) has been a member of NEIU’s theatre family for the past twenty-one years. She has been the Managing /Artistic Director of the Stage Center Theatre, Thymely Theatre, the Summer Theatre and is a past president of the Illinois Theatre Association. She holds an M.F.A. from New York University and has worked in various theatrical venues across the country, the most recent being the Rocky Mountain Repertory Theatre.  Special thanks to H-S-A-N-T and, as always, Mr. McGuire.

Jessica Kuehnau (Set and Costume Designer) is pleased to be designing her fourth  season for the Stage Center Theatre. Since completing her M.F.A. in Scenic and Costume Design at Northwestern University, Ms. Kuehnau has been designing sets and costumes for such notable theatres as Pegasus Players, Circle Theatre, Griffin, Lifeline Theatre, MPAACT, Adventure Stage Chicago, Metropolis Performing Art Center and Backstage Theatre.  She is also the resident set designer at North Park University and a founding ensemble member of Adventure Stage Center Chicago.

John Rodriguez (Lighting Designer) joined the theatre faculty at NEIU eight years ago and has been teaching courses in technical theatre as well as working as a designer on Stage Center Theatre productions.  Most recent designs include Dead Man’s Cell Phone, Around the World in 80 Days, Emma’s Child, Bleacher Bums as well as Summer Theatre’s productions of My Sister Eileen and Hay Fever.

Alex Useted (Technical Director) is glad to be back for his third summer with The Stage Center Theatre. Alex is a freelance technical director and scenic carpenter, and most recently completed technical direction of The Original Grease with American Theater Company. He also works with Crosstown Scenic, where he has contributed to projects for companies throughout the Chicago area, including Drury Lane Oakbrook, The Second City, Writers’ Theatre, and many others.

Sara Carranza (Assistant Director) is a recent graduate from Dominican University and is honored to be a part of the Stage Center Theater production of As You Like It. Most recently she was seen as Hattie in Dominican University’s production of The Women of Lockerbie and assistant stage managed for 16th Street Theater's production of Our Dad is in Atlantis. She will stage manage 16th Street Theater's production of Rebecca Gilman's The Crowd You're In With.

Caitlin (CC) Varpness (Stage Manager) is excited to be stage managing once again at the Stage Center. She last stage managed for Bleacher Bums but has been the Costume Guru for Stage Center shows such as Around The World in 80 Days, Tale of Two Cities and Lucky Stiff. She hails from Minnesota where she rocked an 8th grade performance of Annie as Miss Hannigan. She would like to thank Monica for being an amazing and patient Assistant, the lively cast, her run crew and last but not least Anna Antaramian for her laughter.

Monica Clark  (Assistant Stage Manager) is a first-time Assistant Stage Manager for Summer Theater. She also was the Business Manager for Northeastern Illinois University Children’s Theatre production of The Love for Three Oranges (Spring 2011) and The Wolf and its Shadows (Fall 2010). Monica would like to thank Anna, Lisa, and Caitlin for their guidance during this production. She would also like to thank her family and friends for their unwavering support!

Special thanks to
The Department of Communication, Media, and Theatre Faculty and Staff, Katrina Bell-Jordan, Lisa Cantwell, Tim Duggan, Keith Harkleroad, Donna Goehring, Bob Rietsma, Brian Rogers

Pre/Intermission/Post music was composed and performed by  Tim Duggan and may be found on his CD’s Language Arts 201 and Language Arts 101. Music for As You Like It was composed specifically for this production by Tim Duggan

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