Theatre @ UAFS will perform Marc Norman and Tom Stoppard’s Shakespeare in Love, adapted for the stage by Lee Hall at 7:30 p.m. Feb. 14-16 and 18-19 in the Breedlove Auditorium on the University of Arkansas at Fort Smith campus as part of the Season of Entertainment 38.

The 1995 Best Picture winner film has been adapted for the stage and will be performed at UAFS in glorious style. The play’s lead, Will Shakespeare, is a down-and-out playwright who needs a breakthrough. A beautiful and fiery woman, a producer with shady underworld financing, and a witless cast of start struck hopefuls are sure to entertain.

Hunter Seegers of Van Buren and Mikalyn Reif of Poteau will lead the performance as Will Shakespeare and Viola, respectively.

“This new adaptation is so fun and so much like the film that it’s a treat to get to tackle it,” said Bob Stevenson, director of Theatre at UAFS. Stevenson notes that though theater students will of course study Shakespeare while in the program, the poet’s works can be challenging for modern audiences.

“With this piece, you get the best of both worlds, you get some of the best and most famous bits of Shakespeare with a story that is accessible and easy to understand in standard English. It’s a gift for the audience, a funny, witty, romantic piece that brings the world’s most famous love story to the stage with a unique twist.”

“Plus, it opens on Valentine’s Day,” Stevenson added, “What a great treat for that special someone in your life.”

Two guest directors will be directing “Shakespeare in Love”: Laura Shatkus, a professional actor and director who originally hails from Chicago, but comes to UAFS from northwest Arkansas; and Andrew Snyder, a UAFS theatre graduate who went on to get his MFA in Acting as well as studying theatre abroad before working professionally.

“Working on this show has been a great treat. Getting to know the students and collaborating creatively to tell this epic love story is both challenging and exciting. The play asks us to engage in almost every element of performance in the theatre—dance, combat, comedy, tragedy, intimacy…and a bit with a dog! Even if you don’t know too much about Shakespeare you are sure to fall in love with Shakespeare In Love,” Shatkus says in the release.

Local residents performing in the show include Seegers and Tori Buie, both of Van Buren.

Tickets for the comedic drama are $6 for the general public and free to UAFS faculty, staff and students. To acquire tickets, contact the UAFS Box Office at 479-788-7300 or http: and and tickets.uafs.edu.

The performance is part of the Season of Entertainment 38, a yearlong lineup of entertainment sponsored by the University of Arkansas at Fort Smith featuring a variety of plays, musicals and symphonic performances.

For more information on the play, contact Stevenson at 479-788-7303 or bob.stevenson@uafs.edu.