Joplin, MO (SNS) – With its mix of the natural and supernatural, and a story of love and family, “The Tempest” will be staged during the Missouri Shakespeare Festival, June 23-28 in the Bud Walton Theatre at Missouri Southern State University.

The production will be offered at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday, June 23-27, with a matinee performance at 2:30 p.m. Sunday, June 28.

“It will have a contemporary vibe,” said Dr. Jim Lile, head of Missouri Southern’s Theatre Department and director of the production. “In the play, Prospero creates a storm at sea to bring them to his island to exact his revenge. In this version, the storm hits during cocktail time on the royal yacht.

“It has a very visual touchstone and creates some interesting possibilities. For instance Stephano (the king’s steward) is a butler and Trinculo, who is the king’s jester in the play, is imagined as sort of a fading lounge act.”

Lile said that “The Tempest” has long been a personal favorite and was a natural choice when it came time to select one of the Bard’s plays for this year’s festival.

“The characters are terrific and it has magic, songs and different elements that contribute to making it so wonderful,” he said. “This was the last play Shakespeare wrote himself, and some scholars look at it as his valedictory … his goodbye to the theater.”

The cast features John Early, Greg Swartz, Jim Lile, Rachel Stanley, Carlos Olmedo, Moose Leighton, Matt Campbell, Skylar Walton, Tim Klein, Trenten Henderson, Samantha Green, Stephanie Harter Gilmore, Kelly Campbell, Maria Howe, Amanda Jones, Dyanne Lile and Kathy Walton.

Tickets are $10 and can be reserved by calling the ticket office at 417-625-3190.

Financial support for the project was provided by the Missouri Arts Council.

-WWW.MSSU.EDU-