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‘Year of Lear’ comes to a close

A production of “King Lear” one year in the making premieres at the Adobe Rose Theatre on Friday, Sept. 14.

The Santa Fe-based International Shakespeare Company’s staging of the 1606 tragedy includes a cast of local performers and Ariana Karp, a founding member of the Shakespeare-performing Ducdame Ensemble of New York. She trained at the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art.

Karp is the show’s artistic director and plays Regan, one of Lear’s daughters. King Lear himself will be played by Santa Fe thespian Paul Walsky.

The classic play chronicles the tragedy that ensues after Lear decides to divide his kingdom among his three daughters, and ends up banishing his one loyal and honest daughter.

Formal rehearsals for the production began this August, but preparation for the shows started in September 2017. That included a six-month “close read” of the script, as well as workshops with representatives from LAMDA and Canada’s Stratford Festival, an annual theater festival in Ontario.

The production is the grand finale of the ISC’s “Year of Lear,” a series of workshops, talks and activities centered around the play. Past events include a talk by Columbia University professor and Shakespeare historian James Shapiro and scene performances from the Upstart Crows youth ensemble back in April, as well as a Shakespeare-themed downtown scavenger hunt in February.

“It’s been a year of total immersion!” ISC said in announcing the play’s schedule.

Other cast members are Lynn Goodwin, Marty Madden, Alex Reid, Dylan Marshall, Geoff Pomeroy, Glenna Hill, Mairi Chanel, Marc Lynch, Miles Blitch, Noah Segard and Ambrose Ferber.

Caryl Farkas, co-founder and president of the ISC, directs.

Shows run Friday-Sunday, starting tonight, until Sept. 30.