Custom Made takes on this tragic comedy of love, friendship, prejudice and justice, in a story in which no one is truly innocent.
Now open! Runs through Aug 5; Thurs-Sat 8pm; Sun 7pm
at Gough Street Playhouse
1622 Gough St (at Bush), San Francisco
|“This is a memorable Merchant of Venice, original, exciting, and highly recommended.” – Charles Kruger, Theatre Storm
“The spectacle is so perfectly realized that it seems the play was written for modern times.”
–Stacy Trevenon, Stage and Cinema
“4/5 stars: smashing! While strutting their cells phones, investments and irony, the cast seemed so at home in this language that they brought the text to a whole new level.”
Custom Made’s production of “Merchant of Venice,” directed by Stuart Bousel, relocates the classically controversial play to modern times where, in an atmosphere reminiscent of Wall Street and peopled by status scrounging rogue traders and arrogant millionaires, fortune-seeking Bassanio will pursue the love of genius heiress Portia.
The way to the lady is bared by an edict created by her controlling father that she will lose her fortune if her potential husbands don’t undergo and succeed at a game of chance. Bassanio enlists the financial aid of successful trader Antonio but he enters his own gamble when he agrees to a back room deal with Shylock, a socially ostracized banker whose daughter Jessica is planning a secret elopement with her young lover, the feckless Lorenzo.
A stylistic cross between “Mad Men” and “American Psycho,” Custom Made’s production explores how money, greed, recognition and power corrupts souls and tears lives apart in an era when life and lives are the cost of doing business.
Perry Aliado (Morocco, Tubal), Megan Briggs (Portia), Stefin Collins (Prince of Aragon, Salerio), Catz Forsman (Shylock) , Jean Forsman (Duke, Portia’s Servant), Matt Gunnison (Gratiano) , Ryan Hayes (Antonio), Dashiell Hillman (Bassanio), Molly Holcomb (Nerissa), Brian Martin (Lorenzo), Tonya Narvaez (Salarino), Claire Rice (Salanio), Gabe Ross (Launcelot), Kim Saunders (Jessica)
Set design by Sarah Phykitt
Light design by Maxx Kurzunsky
Costumes by Timothy Malko
Choreography by Daunielle Rasmussen