Chill out, shrew!

by Walter Pierce

The 12th annual Summer Youth Shakespeare Ensemble brings the Bard's riotous comedy to the AcA.

SYSE cast members rehearse a scene from "Taming of the Shrew."

Petruchio might be 14 and Katherina 17, but the action is no less rowdy - and at times bawdy - than the Elizabethan original. Shakespeare's "The Taming of the Shrew" will be performed in the Acadiana Center for the Arts' Moncus Theater this weekend and next complements of the more than three dozen student-thespians taking part in this year's Summer Youth Shakespeare Ensemble camp.

Now in its 12th year, the SYSE is conducted by Acting Up (In Acadiana), the resident theatre company at the AcA. An intense experience for the roughly 40 campers in fifth through 12th grade who take part, the two-week camp immerses the kids in an intense theatrical experience where they learn the script, learn musical accompaniment, build the stage properties and costumes and then put on a show - a different Shakespeare play each year.

Cast members rehearse under the watchful eye of director Amy
Waguespack, center.

Professional staff includes Hector LaSala, set design; Danny Devillier, music; Chad Trahan, costume design; Joseph Lymous, movement-choreography; Brian Schneider, lighting design; and Amy Waguespack, acting and directing; along with numerous members of the Acting Up (in Acadiana) family: Hannah and Ricky Briggs, Sarah Mikayla Brown, Lian Cheramie, Kelly Clayton, Kara Guarisco, Heaven Moore, George Saucier, Cathy Wagnon and interns Chance and Destin Briant, Samantha Degeyter, Mack McAnally and Francesca Tauzin.

"Taming of the Shrew" will be performed Friday/Saturday, July 18-19 and 25-26 at 7:30 p.m. and also at 2 p.m. Sunday, July 20. Tickets are $12 for adults and $8 for kids; AcA members enjoy a $2 discount. Seating is limited. For tickets call (337) 233-7060 or visit www.acadianacenterforthearts.org. For more information call (337) 739-4273.