Experience Shakespeare at his most taut and tense as we pit two of the best actors in the Bay Area against each other in psychological single combat. Don't miss Aldo Billingslea as Othello and Craig Marker as Iago on our intimate stage.

The mercenary Moor Othello, general of the Venetian armies, has just married Desdemona, daughter of a powerful senator. But their delight cannot last long. The villain Iago will see to that. He is jealous for having been passed over for promotion by Othello in favor of the untested gentleman soldier Michael Cassio. He will stop at nothing until he uses Desdemona to destroy the two men he hates.

With 19 Shakespeare productions under his belt, Artistic Director Jasson Minadakis (2010 San Francisco Bay Area Theatre Critics Circle Award winner for best director) helms this timeless, tragic tale of love, deceit, jealousy and murder.

Length of Show

Two hours 45 minutes, including one 15 minute intermission.

MTC's production of OTHELLO, THE MOOR OF VENICE is part of Shakespeare for a New Generation, a national program of the National Endowment for the Arts in cooperation with Arts Midwest.

Cast

  • Rinabeth Apostol*

    Rinabeth Apostol*

    Bianca; Venetian soldier

    Rinabeth Apostol makes her MTC debut in Othello, the Moor of Venice. She recently appeared in Aliens With Extraordinary Skills at B Street Theatre in Sacramento, Of Mice and Men with San Jose Rep on Tour, Avenue Q with San Jose Stage Company and the 2011 Best of PlayGround Festival. Other Bay Area credits include the world premiere of The Kite Runner at San Jose Rep, as well as work with Magic Theatre, TheatreWorks, Precarious Theatre/Brava! for Women in the Arts, Ferocious Lotus and StirFry Theatre. Her regional credits include productions with Arizona Theatre Company, East West Players in Los Angeles and New York University's Skirball Center for the Performing Arts. Her television and film work includes Nickelodeon's Just For Kicks, Our Chart/Showtime's Girltrash!, New Line Cinema's Alpha Dog and numerous independent films. She is a 1stACT Silicon Valley Multicultural Arts Leadership Initiative 2012 Fellow, Emerging Artist Fellow with the Kevin Spacey Foundation and a PlayGround company member in residence at Berkeley Rep.

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  • Aldo Billingslea*

    Aldo Billingslea*

    Othello

    Aldo Billingslea has appeared at MTC in the West Coast premiere of In the Red and Brown Water, the world premiere of Splittin' the Raft and The Hairy Ape. His Bay Area credits include ...and Jesus Moonwalks the Mississippi at the Cutting Ball Theater, A Midsummer Night's Dream and Coriolanus at Shakespeare Santa Cruz and The Elephant Man and Radio Golf at TheatreWorks, as well as appearances at A.C.T., Magic Theatre, Z Space, Playwrights Foundation, Center REP, the Lorraine Hansberry Theatre, PlayGround and Marin Shakespeare Festival. His regional credits include The Rant at InterAct Theatre in Philadelphia and productions at Portland Center Stage, the Old Globe Theatre, Utah Shakespearean Festival, Illinois Shakespeare Festival, the Shakespeare Festival of Dallas and seven seasons with the Oregon Shakespeare Festival in Ashland. Billingslea is an associate professor at Santa Clara University, a PlayGround company member and on the board of Renegade Theatre Experiment.

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  • Dan Hiatt*

    Dan Hiatt*

    Brabantio; Cypriate soldier

    Dan Hiatt has appeared at MTC in Noises Off, The Real Thing, Born Yesterday, Glengarry Glen Ross, Lips Together, Teeth Apart, The Middle Ages, Room Service, Communicating Doors and Life x 3. He was recently in The Pitmen Painters at TheatreWorks, where he also appeared in The 39 Steps and Twentieth Century. His other Bay Area credits include Round and Round the Garden, Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead, The Cherry Orchard, Happy End and The Matchmaker at A.C.T.; Joe Turner's Come and Gone, Dinner with Friends and Menocchio at Berkeley Rep; A Flea in Her Ear, Enchanted April, This Wonderful Life and Sylvia at San Jose Rep; Nicholas Nickleby, Titus Andronicus, The Pastures of Heaven, Much Ado About Nothing, King John, Uncle Vanya and many others at Cal Shakes. His regional theater credits include performances at Seattle Rep, Arizona Theatre Company, the Huntington Theatre, Pasadena Playhouse, Ford's Theatre, Studio Arena Theatre and the Idaho Shakespeare Festival.

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  • Mairin Lee*

    Mairin Lee*

    Desdemona

    Mairin Lee makes her MTC debut in Othello, the Moor of Venice. Her Bay Area credits include Phèdre and A Christmas Carol at A.C.T., The Lion in Winter at Shakespeare Santa Cruz, Pericles at Cal Shakes and the world premiere of The Farm with Shotgun Players. Regionally, she has appeared in Pride and Prejudice and Hamlet at Pennsylvania Shakespeare Festival, In the Next Room (or the vibrator play) at the Wilma Theater and Dracula at Alabama Shakespeare Festival. She has appeared on television in The Good Wife. She is a graduate of A.C.T.'s MFA program, where her favorite credits include O Lovely Glowworm, Her Naked Skin and The Debutante.

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  • Khris Lewin*

    Khris Lewin*

    Duke of Venice; Montano; Lodovico

    Khris Lewin recently appeared at MTC in the West Coast premiere of A Steady Rain. His work in New York includes the Drama Desk-nominated Fêtes de la Nuit by Charles Mee at the Ohio Theatre, Deb Margolin's Time Is the Mercy of Eternity at the West End Theatre, Talking to Terrorists at Culture Project, Private Life of the Master Race at Walkerspace, a trapeze version of Richard II at the Tank and appearances at Symphony Space on NPR's Selected Shorts and Bloomsday on Broadway. Other recent work includes the revival of My One and Only at the Goodspeed Opera House, The Music Man at the Ogunquit Playhouse and the title role in Macbeth at Nebraska Shakespeare. Lewin's film work includes The Eyes Have It, Isn't She and Jim Cramer on CBS's WallStrip. He has a BA from Duke University and an MFA from the National Theatre Conservatory.

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  • Craig Marker*

    Craig Marker*

    Iago

    Craig Marker has appeared at MTC in The Glass Menagerie, the world premieres of Seagull and 9 Circles, the Bay Area premiere of Equivocation and Bus Stop. He was recently in Arms and the Man at Center REP, where he also appeared in The Mousetrap and The Marriage of Figaro. His other Bay Area theater credits include The Circle and Curse of the Starving Class at A.C.T.; Macbeth and Romeo and Juliet at Cal Shakes; As You Like It, The Foreigner, Iphigenia at Aulis and The Intelligent Design of Jenny Chow at San Jose Rep; Macbeth at Shotgun Players; Third, Theophilus North, Brooklyn Boy, Dolly West's Kitchen and Shakespeare in Hollywood at TheatreWorks; Wirehead, First Person Shooter and The Story at SF Playhouse; Cymbeline and Love's Labour's Lost at San Francisco Shakespeare Festival; and The Shape of Things and The Persians at Aurora Theatre Company. Marker appeared in David Edgar's Continental Divide at Berkeley Rep, Birmingham Repertory Theatre, Barbican Theatre (UK) and La Jolla Playhouse.

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  • Nicholas Pelczar*

    Nicholas Pelczar*

    Rodorigo

    Nicholas Pelczar has appeared at MTC in The Glass Menagerie and the Bay Area premiere of boom. He was recently in The Pitmen Painters at TheatreWorks. His other Bay Area credits include War Music, Rock 'n' Roll and A Christmas Carol at A.C.T.; Much Ado About Nothing, Macbeth, The Life and Adventures of Nicholas Nickleby, Othello, Titus Andronicus, Taming of the Shrew, All's Well That Ends Well and The Importance of Being Earnest at Cal Shakes; 4 Adverbs with Word for Word; Hamlet and As You Like It at Pacific Repertory Theatre; A Midsummer Night's Dream at San Francisco Shakespeare Festival; and Marius and Dublin Carol at Aurora Theatre Company. He is a graduate of the A.C.T. MFA acting program.

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  • Patrick Russell*

    Patrick Russell*

    Cassio

    Patrick Russell makes his MTC debut in Othello, the Moor of Venice. He was recently in Body Awareness at Aurora Theatre Company, where he also appeared in Trouble in Mind and Awake and Sing!. His other Bay Area credits include Once in a Lifetime and A Christmas Carol at A.C.T. and Care of Trees with Shotgun Players. He is in the upcoming feature film Us. Russell is a graduate of A.C.T.'s MFA program, where he appeared in Philistines, Good Breeding, Little Shop of Horrors, Romeo and Juliet, Ubu Roi, The Lady from the Sea and Our Lady of 121st Street. He earned a BFA from the University of California, Santa Barbara, where he appeared in Translations, Pentecost and The Lesson. He serves on the faculty of the A.C.T. Conservatory's Young Conservatory and Studio A.C.T. programs.

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  • Liz Sklar*

    Liz Sklar*

    Aemilia; Venetian senator

    Liz Sklar has appeared at MTC in the world premieres of Bellwether and Seagull and is currently an MTC teacher in residence at Martin Luther King Junior Academy in Marin City (funded in part by the National Endowment for the Arts' Shakespeare in American Communities program). She recently appeared in Becky Shaw at SF Playhouse. Her other Bay Area credits include Care of Trees at Shotgun Players, A Christmas Carol at A.C.T., The Tempest at Cal Shakes, The Winter's Tale at Marin Shakespeare Company and The Foreigner at Ross Valley Players. In New York, she most recently played Lady Macbeth in Macbeth at Mortal Folly Theatre. Other regional credits include Philistines, The Lady from the Sea, The Servant of Two Masters, Village Wooing, Little Shop of Horrors, Good Breeding and A Midsummer Night's Dream. She co-starred with Stacy Keach in Imbued, now touring film festivals worldwide. Sklar holds a BA in Theater Arts from Brown University, an MFA in Acting from A.C.T. and has trained with the SITI Company in New York.

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Creative Team

  • William Shakespeare

    William Shakespeare

    Playwright

    William Shakespeare is the single most influential writer in the English language and his dramatic works, translated into all living languages, are the most performed in the world. MTC previously staged his A Midsummer Night's Dream in 1978. Shakespeare is best known for his plays Hamlet, Prince of Denmark (1600-01), Romeo and Juliet (1594-95), A Midsummer Night's Dream (1595-96), The Tragedy of Macbeth (1605-06), The Taming of the Shrew (1593-94) and Othello, the Moor of Venice (1604-05). Some of his other works for stage include comedies Twelfth Night; or, What You Will (1599-1600) and Much Ado About Nothing (1598-99); tragedies King Lear (1605-06), Julius Caesar (1599-1600) and Antony and Cleopatra (1606-07); histories The Life of Henry V (1598-99), The Tragedy of Richard III (1592-93) and Henry IV Parts I and II (1597-98); and romances The Merchant of Venice (1596-98), The Tempest (1611-12) and The Winter's Tale (1623). Shakespeare was also a poet, publishing narrative poems and sonnets, an actor and part owner of a London-based playing company that was known, depending on its patron, as the Lord Chamberlain's Men, the Lord Hunsdon's Men and the King's Men. In 1603, the king of England James I honored Shakespeare and the other actors of the King's Men by naming them Grooms of the Chamber, recognizing them as his court's favorite performers. During his lifetime (1564–1616), Shakespeare was respected as one of the top playwrights working in England, but his reputation did not rise to its present pinnacle until the 19th century. Now canonized, his work is subject to constant performance, scholarship, adaptation and reinterpretation.

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  • Jasson Minadakis

    Jasson Minadakis

    Director

    Jasson Minadakis is in his sixth season as artistic director of MTC. He recently directed The Glass Menagerie at MTC. In previous seasons, he directed Edward Albee's Tiny Alice, the world premiere of Seagull, Happy Now?, Equivocation (2010 Bay Area Critics Circle Award for Director), the world premiere of Sunlight, Lydia, The Seafarer, Frankie and Johnny in the Clair de Lune, A Streetcar Named Desire, said Saïd, Love Song and The Subject Tonight is Love. As artistic director of Actor's Express Theatre Company, he directed The Pillowman, Bug, The Love Song of J. Robert Oppenheimer, Echoes of Another Man, Killer Joe, Burn This, The Goat or, Who is Sylvia?, Blue/Orange and Bel Canto. As producing artistic director of Cincinnati Shakespeare Festival, he directed Jesus Hopped the 'A' Train, Chagrin Falls (2002 Cincinnati Entertainment Award for Best Production), The Beard of Avon, Arcadia, Nocturne, Fuddy Meers, Lovers & Executioners, Jacob Marley's Christmas Carol, Betrayal, The Weir, Waiting for Godot, The Misanthrope, A Chance of Lightning, The Three Musketeers, Dracula, The Color Wheel and 19 productions of Shakespeare. Regional credits include Cat on a Hot Tin Roof and Hamlet at Georgia Shakespeare, Copenhagen at Playhouse on the Square (2003 Ostrander Theatre Award for Best Dramatic Production) and Bedroom Farce at Wayside Theatre. In 2004, The Atlanta Journal Constitution, Creative Loafing and Southern Voice named him best director of the year.

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  • J.B. Wilson+

    Set Designer

    J.B. Wilson has designed 16 sets for MTC, including Seven Guitars and Jasson Minadakis's productions of Edward Albee's Tiny Alice, Equivocation, Sunlight, The Seafarer and said Saïd. Over the past 33 years, his extensive national and Bay Area credits have included work with directors Kent Gash, Albert Takazauckas, Carey Perloff, Timothy Near, Dianna Shuster, Robert Kelley, John Lion, Robert Woodruff, Joy Carlin, Richard E.T. White, Tony Taccone, Amy Glazer, Lee Sankowich, Murray Mednick and many others. Wilson is a professor at San Francisco State University. jbwilson.com

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  • Kurt Landisman+

    Lighting Designer

    Kurt Landisman has designed lighting for over 40 of MTC's productions, including Seven Guitars, Edward Albee's Tiny Alice, Happy Now?, Equivocation, The Seafarer and Lydia. His lighting designs have been seen at most Bay Area theaters including A.C.T., Berkeley Rep, San Jose Rep, Aurora Theatre Company, Center REP, San Francisco Opera, Cal Shakes, Magic Theatre and TheatreWorks. He has received numerous San Francisco Bay Area Theatre Critics Circle and Drama-Logue awards. Nationally, Landisman's designs have been seen at Arizona Theatre Company, Laguna Playhouse, Los Angeles Opera, Minnesota Opera, Sacramento Opera, Virginia Opera, Tulsa Opera, Ballet Arizona, Guthrie Theatre and Cincinnati Playhouse, as well as Off Broadway at Circle Rep and Douglas Fairbanks Theatre. His association with playwright Sam Shepard included the world premieres of True West and Fool for Love. Internationally, his designs have been seen in Tokyo, Singapore and Shanghai. kurtlandisman.com

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  • Fumiko Bielefeldt+

    Costume Designer

    Fumiko Bielefeldt has designed costumes for MTC's productions of Edward Albee's Tiny Alice, Equivocation, What the Butler Saw, Lovers & Executioners, Frozen, Displaced, Fugitive Kind, Indiscretions and Candida. Other recent credits include Miss Julie at Aurora Theatre; The Secret Garden, Sense and Sensibility, Light in the Piazza, Twentieth Century and Caroline, or Change at TheatreWorks; Evie's Waltz at Magic Theatre and Emma for Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park and The Repertory Theatre of St. Louis. Her designs have also appeared at A.C.T., Cal Shakes, Theatre of Yugen and Kansas City Repertory Theatre. In Japan, she has designed for Tokyo Theatre of Children and Tokyo Shitamachi Festival. Fumiko has received many awards, including the Barbara Bladen Porter Special Award, Bay Area Theater Critics Circle, Dean Goodman Choice, Back Stage West Garland and Drama-Logue awards.

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  • Chris Houston

    Composer & Sound Designer

    Chris Houston is a pianist, composer and sound designer. He has designed sound for MTC's productions of Bellwether, Seven Guitars, Edward Albee's Tiny Alice, Fuddy Meers, Seagull, Happy Now?, In the Red and Brown Water, Equivocation, Sunlight, boom, My Name is Asher Lev, Magic Forest Farm, Lydia, The Seafarer, Frankie and Johnny in the Clair de Lune, Love Person, A Streetcar Named Desire, said Saïd and Lovers & Executioners. Locally, his designs and compositions have been featured at A.C.T., Aurora Theatre Company, SF Playhouse, Center REP, Magic Theatre and the San Francisco Shakespeare Festival.

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  • Dave Maier

    Fight Director

    Dave Maier makes his MTC debut with Othello, the Moor of Venice. His work has been seen at A.C.T., Berkeley Rep, San Jose Rep, La Jolla Playhouse, SF Playhouse, Berkeley Playhouse and Impact Theatre, among others. He is the resident fight director at Cal Shakes and a company member with Shotgun Players. Maier is an instructor of theatrical combat with Dueling Arts International and a founding member of Dueling Arts San Francisco. Recent performance credits include God's Plot at Shotgun Players and Cyrano de Bergerac at the San Francisco Opera, where he served as fight double for Placido Domingo. He is currently teaching combat related courses at Berkeley Rep School of Theatre and St. Mary's College of California.

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  • Lynn Soffer

    Dialect and Text Coach

    Lynne Soffer has provided coaching for 26 MTC productions, including A Steady Rain, The Glass Menagerie, Happy Now?, My Name Is Asher Lev, Lydia, My Children! My Africa! and A Streetcar Named Desire. She has worked on over 200 theater productions at A.C.T., Berkeley Rep, San Jose Rep, Magic Theatre, Cal Shakes and Marin Shakespeare Company among others. Her regional credits include the Old Globe, Dallas Theater Center, Arizona Theatre Company, the Arena Stage, Seattle Rep and Denver Center Theatre Company. Her film and television credits include Metro, Duets, The Land of Milk and Honey and America's Most Wanted. Soffer works as a professional actor and acting teacher and is the recipient of the 2011 Actors' Equity Association Lucy Jordan Humanitarian Award.

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  • Jonathan Templeton*

    Stage Manager

    Jonathan Templeton has stage managed MTC's productions of A Steady Rain, The Glass Menagerie and Seven Guitars. He has worked in Chicago on Good Boys and True, Art and four seasons of First Look Repertory of New Work at Steppenwolf Theatre Company; Trust, Fedra, Argonautika, The Brothers Karamazov, Great Men of Science, The Shaggs, 1984, The Old Curiosity Shop, Black Diamond and Around the World in 80 Days at Lookingglass Theatre Company, where he is a production affiliate; Loving Repeating, Execution of Justice and Wedding Play at About Face Theatre; and Orpheus Descending at American Theatre Company. He also spent two summers with Weston Playhouse in Vermont. Templeton is a graduate of Northwestern University.

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* Denotes member of Actors Equity Association
+ Member, United Scenic Artists
^ Member, Society of Stage Directors and Choreographers

Reviews

  • "A solid production well worth a look for anyone who's never seen the iconic tragedy or only wants to revisit it on special occasions... [Aldo Billingslea] and [Craig] Marker escalate the deception of [Othello by Iago] with insidious skill. It isn't often that Iago's ploys win audible gasps of horror from an opening night audience."

    — San Francisco Chronicle Read full review
  • "It's a dynamic staging, elegantly capturing both the humor and the pathos, and the entire cast handles Shakespeare's language crisply and eloquently... Though there's never any question of what's going to happen, the show does an impressively effective job of making you hope against hope that Othello will wise up before it's too late."

    — Marin IJ Read full review
  • "Attending a Shakespeare performance in a 200-plus seat theater can be an exceptional experience, given a first-class cast and strong direction. Marin Theatre Company's new production of Othello scores on all counts, delivering one of Shakespeare's most intense works straight-up and powerful. Director Jasson Minadakis has no tricks up his sleeve, nor does he bow to the relevance issue in his concept... Minadakis stages closely to the text and lets everything emerge through the language. The focus is the language, and Othello and Iago in their death struggle are given ample space to dwell upon the poetry so that nothing is lost."

    — Mill Valley Patch and Novato Patch Blogs Read full review
  • "I saw, the other night, a truly superb production of Othello, The Moor of Venice at the Marin Theater Company in Mill Valley... As myself a yearly attendant at the Oregon Shakespeare Company I have seen, over the years, a number of Othellos. The Marin Theatre Company's production was far superior to any of the Othellos I had seen in Ashland because both the Othello and Iago were truly equal in acting ability."

    — America Magazine Blog Read full review
  • "Watching MTC's Othello, I wondered if William Shakespeare was determined – with teeth-gritted ferocity – to make the audience squirm with the effort of holding back shouts of warning and outrage... This gripping and compelling version in Mill Valley so relentlessly draws in the spectator that a silent reaction may take an effort. The story's painstaking exploration of the unleashed demons of carnage, duplicity, and jealousy is intensely heightened by no-holds-barred acting."

    — Stage and Cinema Blog Read full review
  • "It is a great pleasure to see one of the Bard's plays mounted in a classical mode. That does not preclude using the neoteric lighting, sound and costumes to enhance his themes and structure and Marin Theatre Company (MTC) has done just that to present a powerful Othello. It also helps, greatly helps, to have a seasoned director of Shakespearean plays to guide the totality to fruition... This staging of Othello, the Moor of Venice attests to [Artistic Director Jason Minadakis,'s] ability. It also helps to have two great actors to play of Othello (Aldo Billingslea) and Iago (Craig Marker)... Aldo Billingslea is a great Othello with a reverberating voice, regal stature and complete mastery of Shakespearean verse. Craig Marker's performance beautifully matches Billingslea and his "honest" Iago gains the trust of all those around him while masking his villainous nature."

    — For All Events Blog Read full review
  • "Aldo Billingslea commands the stage as Othello... [he] fully embodies the power, pathos and poetic sensitivity of the title role. His towering performance is the reason to see the production.

    — San Francisco Examiner
  • "Intense, soul-stirring... Marin Theatre's production of Othello ignites the theatrical experience, setting Shakespeare's play ablaze with spirited acting and excellent staging. MTC takes audiences down a dire and taxing road, but it's a road they won't regret taking."

    — Broadwayworld.com: San Francisco Read full review
  • "One of the most accessible versions of the play I have ever seen."

    — Pacific Sun
  • "[Director Jasson] Minadakis deserves a lot of credit for his cleverly crafted, electric and fresh version of this play... In bringing this classic Shakespearean tragedy to life, Minadakis has made many strong and bold choices... With the strength and skills of his incredible cast, Minadakis was able to pull off his unique vision of Othello."

    — For All Events Blog Read full review
  • "I have to say I'm glad I saw the production because these two formidable local talents [Aldo Billingslea and Craig Marker] do not disappoint. Watching Billingslea transform from noble warrior to blushing groom to murderous, jealousy-enraged monster is captivating. And Marker's boyish earnestness somehow makes Iago even more coldhearted than usual. Even from behind a scruffy beard, Marker can't escape a look of innocence that contrasts sharply with the evil spewing from his lips. Billingslea and Marker perform a beautifully calibrated duet of provocation and victimization that erupts into a finale can't help but satisfy."

    — Theaterdogs Blog Read full review
  • "Jasson Minadakis's production for Marin Theatre Company gives us a wonderful evocation of Venice and Cypress with a beautifully effective set by J. B. Wilson supported by superb lighting design and costumes by Kurt Landisman and Fumiko Bielefeldt... Fight director Dave Maier has provided thrilling swordplay and convincing physical action with cinematic realism. The atmospheric riches of this Othello are in every way exceptional."

    — TheatreStorm Blog Read full review

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