Venue Details

499 Star Starred
Artists Repertory Theatre - Morrison Stage
Located at Artists Repertory Theatre 1515 SW Morrison St. Portland, OR 97205
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Reviews & Ratings

"King Lear"
6 ratings
4.3 average rating
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7 events
1 review
0 stars
attended Jul 18 2012

The acting in this interpretation of King Lear is exceptional and you can tell each cast member is passionate for the words and stories of the Bard. Truly a hidden gem and my Mom and I really enjoyed the evening very much. It was a very...continued

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41 events
23 reviews
3 stars
attended Jul 28 2012

Very powerful re-interpretation, well cast and well done. Get tickets before it's too late. These people put their hearts and souls into this production and you don't want to miss it.

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6 events
4 reviews
0 stars
attended Aug 04 2012

Some nice acting, and interesting with the updated scenes. A bit jumbled and crowded and hard to follow without knowing your Lear, or reading the Cliff Notes ahead!

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More Information


Jon Kretzu, who will direct this startling, reimagined King Lear, says about the production:  “This intimate re-interpretation will focus on exploring the anguish of familial conflict, misunderstanding and violence within the context of a surreal contemporary nightmare of dementia, madness and mortality.”  Make your plans now and experience for yourself this summer why _King Lear _has inspired scholars, poets and even plumbers for hundreds of years.

Director Jon Kretzu’s Notes on His Production of _King Lear:

_I have always loved King Lear.  It is one of those unique artistic works that seem to explore and expose the deepest parts of human behavior and action with depth, poetry and heartbreaking truth. For me, what has always made it work is its depiction of the pain and searing extremes of love and hate present in most families:  the need for control; the slow rot of mistrust; jealousy and envy; the sad truth of neglect; and misplaced affection. Mixed into this personal tragedy are larger issues: the shock of realizing the primal, bottomless possibility of violence and cruelty lying dormant in all of us; the deep fear of madness and losing control - either thru trauma or the complexities of the aging process; and, finally, a clear-eyed look into the abyss of life’s realities in a cruel world where happy endings are sadly not the norm.


I want to explore the play thru all of these viewpoints – for me, the social, political strife of the play has always been the least interesting side of the play. Because of this, I want to explore the piece in a more personal, human-sized way, concentrating on the family dynamics and personal tragedies. I am also fascinated by the way Lear’s madness transforms and distorts the world around him into an ever more horrific nightmare.  It has always seemed a very contemporary script to me, full of language and action that is as avant garde and surreal as anything in literature. It remains a play that both astonishes and lacerates.

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