OSF hosts CultureFest

Building on the success of its Festival Latino in 2008, the Oregon Shakespeare Festival will host a celebration of multi-ethnic cultures Thursday through Sunday, Sept. 30 through Oct. 3. Called CultureFest, the event will feature seven free outdoor performances on the Green Show deck by regional musicians and dancers, five Spanish open-captioned performances of four plays and other Spanish bilingual events and materials.

Ticket discounts for performances will be available for multicultural groups during the festivities.

"As a local and national resource to many communities, OSF strives to reflect the full diversity of our nation in all of our work," said Artistic Director Bill Rauch in a press release. "I am deeply excited about CultureFest as a special, concentrated time to celebrate that commitment. I can't wait to share the energy of this special week with our community."

The festival's Green Show will feature the following acts:

6:45 p.m. Sept. 30 — Mitsuki Dazai, traditional and contemporary Japanese koto music

Noon Oct. 1 — Dancing Spirit Dancing Drum, traditional American Indian drumming, dancing and storytelling

6:45 p.m. Oct. 1 — Okaidja Afroso, African diaspora music and dance

Noon Oct. 2 — Ballet Folklórico Ritmo Alegre, traditional Mexican folk dancing

6:45 p.m. Oct. 2 — Bar Misfits, klezmer music

Noon Oct. 3 — Mitsuki Dazai, traditional and contemporary Japanese koto music

6:45 p.m. Oct. 3 — René y Grant, Latino music from duo René Millán and Grant Ruiz

The Spanish open-captioned performances are scheduled for:

8 p.m. Sept. 30 — "Throne of Blood"

8 p.m. Oct. 1 — "Ruined"

1:30 p.m. Oct. 2 — "Hamlet"

8 p.m. Oct. 2 — "American Night"

1:30 p.m. Oct. 3 — "American Night"

CultureFest is part of OSF's dedication to the inclusion of diverse people, ideas, cultures and traditions. As one of the nation's largest arts institutions, the theater company has committed itself to reflecting America's diversity onstage and in its audiences. OSF Audience Development Manager Freda Casillas says specialized programming for multicultural groups and first-time theatergoers will be available throughout the 2011 season.

A series of Spanish open-captioned performances will be offered twice next year, and groups can request backstage tours or an Introduction to Shakespeare class, both available in Spanish.

For individual and group ticket information for CultureFest, call 541-482-2111, ext. 242. Para información de ventas individuales y de grupo, llame al 541-482-2111, ext. 242. Or visit www.osfashland.org.

CultureFest is made possible through the support of Community Partner, Patrocinador Comunitario Una Voz, Latino Leadership and Advocacy, the Oregon Arts Commission, Oregon Cultural Trust, Meyer Memorial Trust and the New Generations Program funded by the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation and The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, administered by Theatre Communications Group.

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