Aria Shaghasemi (The Originals, Legacies) and Anita Pomario (The Macaluso Sisters) will lead a new adaptation of Shakespeare's Romeo & Juliet, set in the Jazz Age and featuring a '20s dance number. The production will serve as the relaunch for New Jersey classical theatre company Shakespeare@, newly renamed as The Curtain. Performances begin September 28 with opening night set for September 30. The run will continue through October 22.
Shaghasemi and Pomario will be playing the title roles, alongside Andrew Sellon (Gotham) as Friar Laurence, Mark Torres (Amadeus) as Capulet, Thia Stephan as Lady Capulet, and Christianna Nelson as The Nurse. Rounding out the company are Joshua T. Crockett, Jonathan Dauermann, Ariel Diaz-Beato, Ido Gal, Tucker Lewis, Francis Mateo, Jomack Miranda, Abel Santiago, Miles Segura, and Mark Torres. Casting is by Robin Carus.
Shakespeare@ launched in 2019 with a production of Hamlet starring Jonathan Forbes and Eden Brolin. This upcoming Romeo & Juliet will be the company's first return to live performance since the COVID-19 pandemic, during which they released a series of audio performances in the style of serialized radio dramas.
Curtain Producing Artistic Director Sean Hagerty is both directing and adapting the upcoming production, leading a creative team that also includes costume designer William Ward, lighting designer Olivia Loverde, sound designer Sonic Designs, voice and speech coach Nora Leonhardt, and fight director and intimacy coordinator Brad Lemons. Allison Hohman will stage manage.
"I am beyond thrilled to announce our return to stage performance, bringing Shakespeare@ to a new life as The Curtain," says Hagerty in a statement. "Romeo & Juliet strikes me as the perfect story for our time—and setting it at the dawn of the Jazz Age in 1920 makes absolute sense with its inherent themes of the age-old conflict between the young and the old, new movements vs. the old establishment, and the societal divides that can stifle beauty and destroy love. All of us feel very grateful and fortunate to make our return with this show and this incredible international cast. We are excited to bring our vision back to Jersey City and our devoted audiences."
Visit TheCurtain.org for more.