Lyrical theater production

NAU School of Music students bring the mischievous comedy of Kiss Me, Kate to Ardrey Memorial Auditorium April 1-3.

Directed by Eric Gibson, the award-winning musical combines Cole Porter’s music and lyrics with William Shakespeare’s Taming of the Shrew for a dazzling lyrical production.

The 1940s story is about divorced Broadway actors Fred Graham and Lilli Vanessa who agree to act together in the Shakespeare production. They play their roles alongside rising young actors Lois Lane and Bill Calhoun. A series of romantic misunderstandings launch a parallel backstage story, complicated further by the antics of mobsters showing up to collect Bill’s gambling debts.  

This is the first musical theater production for Gibson, who brings years of professional experience to the university. Shakespearean costumes, professional lighting, top-notch set design and vintage-era clothing crafted by NAU faculty bring the fully-staged production to life.

Kiss Me, Kate will be performed at 7:30 p.m. April 1-2 and 2:30 p.m. April 3. Tickets are $22 for adults; $18 for seniors; $10 for NAU employees; $6 for children and NAU students with an ID. Tickets can be purchased from the Central Ticket Office by calling (928) 523-5661 or by visiting nau.edu/cto.

The production is part of the NAU College of Arts and Letters Shakespeare Festival, commemorating the 400th year of the death of the renowned poet and playwright William Shakespeare.

For a behind-the-scenes look into the making of Kiss Me, Kate, watch the segment below.