The Merchant of Venice
BY WILLIAM SHAKESPEARE
ADAPTED BY MICHAEL DAILEY & NIC DIMOND
DIRECTED BY GEORGE CEDERQUIST
Mar 28, 2004–May 15, 2004
3829 N. Broadway
Just another day in Venice as old money and new money meet head-on. Shylock, big fish in the Jewish banking community, made his money the old fashioned way: slowly and carefully. Antonio, goy-wonder of the Venetian financial world, prefers high-risk, big-profit investments. They hate each other. And now Antonio’s about to make the highest risk investment of his life.
Antonio’s buddy Bassanio, perpetually down-and-out, wants to sail to nearby Belmont to try his luck in a game of chance to win the hand of the wealthy and beautiful Portia. To bankroll this gambling excursion Signore Bassanio turns to Shylock for a loan, and Antonio steps in to guarantee it with a pound of his own flesh. When Antonio’s luck finally gives out, Shylock is determined to see the debt paid in full.
Director G. J. Cederquist, Strawdog Artistic Director Nic Dimond and Artistic Associate Mike Dailey have sliced a pound out of Shakespeare’s most controversial play and left it as lean and mean as a day-trader on a caffeine binge.
It’s another hard-boiled assault on Shakespeare from the crew at Strawdog.
Sean T. Mallary
* Strawdog Theatre ensemble member