The wonderful Lev Harvey joins us for another summer in a more serious, studied role. Camillo is the fiercely loyal right-hand man to first Leontes, then Polixenes. He serves as one of the bridges between the two countries and two acts of the play, and his noble sincerity is riveting.
Lev has much to say about his hometown, his puppy, and the structure of and characterizations in The Winter's Tale. Read on, and catch the whole crew at the Alchemical Theatre Laboratory starting July 20!
What's your favorite thing about your hometown?
The diversity. Teaneck, New Jersey was one of, if not the first school districts to voluntarily integrate the school systems in the United States. That camaraderie is still very much present and is something you don't find in the neighboring towns.
Also the food. Oh my lord, THE FOOD! If you want to venture to take a bus ride over the GWB to either Chickies or Bagel Twist, you shan't be disappointed!.
What does your ideal Saturday look like?
Sleeping in and taking my pup on a nice long walk through Riverside Park. Then probably bagels because they're the key to my soul. Or pancakes. Or waffles. Anything carb related, I'm all about it is what I'm trying to say. Then hitting the park with some friends and tossing a frisbee around. I would say going out after that but I'm an old soul. Just give me my pup and some John Coltrane on vinyl with good people and I'm set.
What's your favorite role you've played, Shakespeare or otherwise?
Happy Loman from Death of a Salesman. Also Oswald Alving from Ibsen's Ghosts.
What excites you about The Winter's Tale?
The blend of art and death Shakespeare intertwines fascinates me, especially within the The Winter's Tale. For Elizabethans, thinking and talking about death was a national pastime and not do so was almost undutiful. I also love the parallel between tragedy and romance. The first three acts deal with the former, the last two, the latter. Shakespeare puts on a clinic of bridging the gap between high and low art.
Also at the time spirits of dead women were rarely shown on the Elizabethan stage and female revenge was even rarer. I love how he really gave so much authority and voice to these female characters. While they are put through so much BS by the men, they continue to be fiercely commanding and true to themselves in a play that deals so much with deception. These woman freaking rock and Sicilia and Bohemia would be drowned without them.
Featuring a mad king, an exit pursued by a bear, and three of Shakespeare's strongest female characters, The Winter's Tale is a lesser-known, lesser-told story that gives us both tragedy and comedy, love and loss, winter and spring.
The Winter's Tale performs July 20, 21, 27, 28 at 7pm and July 29 at 5pm at the Alchemical Theatre Laboratory. Tickets may be purchased in advance here.
About Classics on the Rocks:
Shakespeare doesn't have to be complicated and it's our mission at Classics on the Rocks to make classical theatre accessible, exciting, palatable, and fun for everyone - whether you're brand new to Shakespeare or have read the canon cover to cover.
At Classics on the Rocks, we believe that just as whiskey doesn't need anything more than rocks to tame it's bite. Shakespeare doesn't need fancy concepts, modernizations, frilly costumes, or big sets to make it relatable. All you need are talented actors who trust the text and tell the story. It's classics served simply on the rocks.