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August 14, 2012

Traveling Players Ensemble Re-creates Commedia dell’Arte at Colonial Williamsburg’s Play Booth Theatre

The Traveling Players Ensemble of Great Falls, Va., re-creates historical commedia dell’arte with masks, improvisation and zany humor at 9 a.m. Aug. 21-22 at Colonial Williamsburg’s Play Booth Theatre. This year’s stage presentation is “The Picture,” which is based on a 17th-century farce from Italy. When a handsome actor arrives in Parma, all of the city's most upstanding female citizens become infatuated with him. Can a pair of hapless young men restore order, or will the city be brought to its knees by the jealousy of lovestruck women?

Often described as "live-action cartoons," commedia's slapstick humor is fun for kids, adults and scholars alike.

No admission ticket is required.

For more information, call 1-800-HISTORY.

Now celebrating its 10th year, the Traveling Players Ensemble is a professional theater company dedicated to bringing great theater into the great outdoors through a thriving summer camp. The ensemble's camp provides intensive, classical theater training to small troupes of actors who are carefully guided by professional theater artists to perform in outdoor settings. The program reflects the origins of theater, when troupes of actors roamed the ancient and medieval countryside, relying on the barest props and boldest imagination to convey their art. Each session culminates in a fully mounted and designed performance which tours to several locations, cultivating stronger, more adaptable and capable artists and individuals.

The Traveling Players Ensemble was selected one of the 25 "Summer School in the Arts" in the nation in 2007 by the National Education Association. Eight students from the troupe won their school's English Speaking Union Shakespeare Competition. The Washington Post called the troupe "a little-known summer gem."

More than 1,500 high school students have participated in the camp since its inception in 2003. The troupe has performed more than 290 plays at several venues in Virginia and the Washington, D.C., metro area including the Kennedy Center's Millennium Stage, the International Children's Festival at Wolf Trap, the Reston Multicultural Festival and Folger Shakespeare Library's Secondary School Festival.

The Colonial Williamsburg Foundation is the not-for-profit educational and cultural organization dedicated to the preservation, interpretation and presentation of the restored 18th-century Revolutionary capital of Virginia. This town-sized living history museum tells the inspirational stories of our journey to become Americans through programs in the Historic Area and through the award-winning Revolutionary City program. Explore The Art Museums of Colonial Williamsburg and discover the DeWitt Wallace Decorative Arts Museum featuring the best in British and American decorative arts from 1670 – 1830 and the Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Folk Art Museum home to the nation’s premier collection of American folk art, comprising more than 5,000 folk art objects made during the 18th, 19th, 20th and 21st centuries. Colonial Williamsburg Hotels feature conference spaces and recreation activities from spa and fine dining to world-class golf. Colonial Williamsburg is committed to expanding its thought-provoking programming through education outreach on-site and online. Purchase of Colonial Williamsburg products and services supports the preservation, research and educational programs of the Foundation. Philanthropic support by individuals, corporations, and foundations benefits the educational mission of The Colonial Williamsburg Foundation.

Williamsburg is located in Virginia’s Tidewater region, 20 minutes from Newport News, within an hour’s drive of Richmond and Norfolk, and 150 miles south of Washington, D.C. For more information about Colonial Williamsburg, call 1-800-HISTORY or visit Colonial Williamsburg’s website at

Media Contact:
Penna Rogers
(757) 220-7121