Idaho Shakespeare Festival

Idaho Shakespeare Festival

The Idaho Shakespeare Festival is preparing to open its major musical production of the summer: The Hunchback of Notre Dame, featuring songs from the 1996 Disney animated classic. The theatrical adaptation of the musical has been rarely seen on American stages; only two other U.S. cities have hosted productions of the show.

With just a few days before ISF’s debut of The Hunchback of Notre Dame on Friday, June 30, actors Corey Mach, who plays the title role and Keri Renee Fuller, who plays the gypsy Esmeralda, visit with Weekend Edition host George Prentice.

Idaho Shakespeare Festival

Idaho Shakespeare Festival’s production of Hamlet, its first in more than a decade, continues at its amphitheater south of Boise through the month of June. The production, directed by ISF’s artistic producing director Charlie Fee, features an Elizabethan set design and on-stage seating for the audience.

But the real talk of the town surrounds the casting of Hamlet. Alternating in the lead role are Laura Welsh Berg and Jonathan Dyrud. And when they’re not playing Hamlet, the actors are also alternating in the supporting role of Rosencrantz.

Adam Cotterell / Boise State Public Radio

This summer, more than 60,000 people are expected to see a play at the Idaho Shakespeare Festival. Of the five plays this season, perhaps the most anticipated is "Sweeney Todd".

This blood-drenched murder musical by Stephen Sondheim shocked audiences when it debuted more than 30 years ago. It’s had a large and loyal audience ever since, and in 2007 director Tim Burton made a movie version starring Johnny Depp.

This is not the Shakespeare Festival’s first dance with Sondheim but it is its first time with "Sweeney Todd". 

DKM Photography

The Idaho Shakespeare Festival opens its 2013 season this weekend. The organization “Americans for the Arts” estimates the festival put about $3.3 million into Idaho’s economy last year. More than 58,000 people spent an evening under the stars at the festival’s amphitheater in Boise last summer. Managers expect more than 60,000 this year.