'Two Gentlemen of Verona' at Jungle Theater
Two Gentlemen of Verona, the all-female production that opened the Jungle Theater’s 2016 season, was a celebration of the pure joy of live performance. Amid a generational wave of leadership transitions across town, incoming artistic director Sarah Rasmussen’s first show at the Jungle felt like a decisive marker of a bright new era. The traditionally box-like stage was blown open with an abstract pink set. The fourth wall was neither seen nor felt as performers wandered among audience members, some of whom were seated onstage. Best of all, the diverse cast made gold with Shakespeare’s script, completely owning the sharp comedy while casting its problematic aspects in a new light. The actors’ delight was contagious, from the charming stars to the deadpan supporting players. The production made a case for both change and continuity, for theater as a living art.