COURTESY HAWAII SHAKESPEARE FESTIVAL
"Othello" opens the Hawaii Shakespeare Festival on Friday.
Summer Shakespeare offers a rare staging of 'Merchant'
Shylock: villain or victim? That is the question that will percolate through the 2008 Hawaii Shakespeare Festival's long-anticipated production of "The Merchant of Venice" in August.
2008 Hawaii Shakespeare Festival
Place: The ARTS @ Marks Garage
Times: "Othello" opens 7:30 p.m. Friday, then 7:30 p.m. Thursdays to Saturdays, and 3:30 p.m. Sundays, through July 27. "Henry V" opens 7:30 p.m. Aug. 8, then 7:30 p.m. Thursdays to Saturdays, and 3:30 p.m. Sundays, through Aug. 17. "Merchant of Venice" opens at 7:30 p.m. Aug. 22, then 7:30 p.m. Thursdays to Saturday, and 3:30 p.m. Sundays, through Aug. 31.
Tickets: $10 (Thursdays), $14 (Sundays) and $18 (Fridays, Saturdays). Season ticket is $42.
Call: 550-8457 or visit HonoluluBoxOffice.com
Festival co-founder Tony Pisculli promised in 2002 that he and his partners, R. Kevin Doyle and Harry Wong III, were going to do all of Shakespeare's plays - not just sure-fire ticket-sellers like "Romeo & Juliet" and "A Midsummer Night's Dream." The trio make good on their promise with "Merchant"; it's the first time in recent memory that the play has been staged in Hawaii.
"Merchant" was considered a romantic comedy in Shakespeare's time, but Shylock, the moneylender who goes to court to collect an actual "pound of flesh" from a debtor, is Jewish, and the play is often seen as promoting an anti-Semitic agenda. Some scholars interpret Shylock as a sympathetic character, victim to the capriciousness of a dominant Christian culture.
The final interpretation is up to actor and director. Robert St. John will star as the titular merchant opposite Stephen Mead as Shylock and Danielle Vivarttas-Anrnsbark as Portia, with Linda Johnson directing.
But for now, "Othello," another guaranteed draw, opens the 2008 festival at The ARTS @ Marks Garage. Scott Rogers directs Derrick Brown (Othello) and Todd Coolidge (Iago). Pisculli will present his latest experiment doing Shakespeare with an all-female cast when "Henry V" opens Aug. 8.
Tall, slim vases of flowers were designed for a hotel lobby by Jun Pinon.
HOME & GARDEN
Floral designer leads workshop
Master floral designer Jun Pinon of San Francisco will present a workshop at the Halekulani hotel on July 27 as part of the lifestyle series "Halekulani Living."
Pinon got his first hotel florist job at the Halekulani, then studied with acclaimed designer Stanlee Gatti in San Francisco and built a reputation that has garnered the attention of the Bay Area for innovation and whimsy.
He has created designs for the lobbies of the Four Seasons Hotel, Ritz Carlton San Francisco and the homes of many A-list clients.
Pinon is known in the Bay Area for his lively floral demonstrations, often sold out and often held for charity. His workshop, 3 to 6 p.m., will feature interactive demonstrations and personal coaching. Cost is $65 and includes champagne and an afternoon tea. Reservations required; call 931-5005.
Learn to create hardy decorations
"Arranging Nature," a workshop conducted by Kathleen Yoshinaga of Ito Florist and interior designer Mary Philpotts McGrath, will focus on creating floral arrangements that can last up to three weeks.
At 1 p.m. Sunday and 10 a.m. Monday and Tuesday, participants will learn to determine the age of flowers; how to grow greenery with long-lasting leaves, such as monstera and ti; and other things. Admission is free. Call 275-3075 for reservations.
Seminar teaches termite-proofing
The Termite Project, a free seminar Wednesday, will feature Julian Yates, giving tips on how to prevent and temper the wood-damaging pests.
The University of Hawaii-Manoa's College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources sponsors the lecture from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. at Windward Community College.
Registration is required. Call 235-7433 or visit ocet.wcc.hawaii.edu/free.htm.
Kona club hosts show on orchids
The Kona Daifukuji Orchid Club hosts its 26th show, "Optimize Your Landscape with Orchids," July 27 at the Daifukuji Mission Hall.
The 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. event will include demonstrations for using and growing orchids. Admission is free. Call (808) 938-2123.