So I realize that at first this title might suggest some sort of post-apocalyptic world of fire, but it actually is about my experiences in a small town where the main attraction is Shakespeare. See, the Ashland I am referring to is in Oregon, and is the home of the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, which is very renowned for its theater production skills. While I live in Washington, this is a trip that my family makes every year. We drive the 6-7 hour drive down and my family does our best not to kill each other in that small window of time that we are forced to be together all at once.
We did get there after driving past some gorgeous mountains, and more than a few llamas (llamas!). It was very hot and the car we were driving in had been broken for a few years now, so that it could no longer use air conditioning. I would roll my window down, but the smell of llama (llamas!) soon permeated the small supply of air we had to breathe ,and choked us until we close the windows again and the air toxicity level went down. When we at last got to the hotel where we always stay, my lips were dry, my mouth was dry, and my nose was dry. But we made it, and I wasted NO time before leaping into the pool and staying there for about an hour. After that, I was fired up enough to hop on Team Liquid (I have no life >.<).
It was about 6:00 PM when we at last reached that hotel, but it was so bright and hot out it could easily have been mistaken by somebody who was inattentive as being 12:00. Which is what I did. So I was quite surprised when we had dinner so early, but I was hungry enough to eat it anyways. At about 8:00 PM we left our hotel and walked down the streets to the theaters. The town, for guests or tourists, that is, is basically two streets that split off at this funky fork. On these two streets is shop after shop after shop of clothes, used bookstores, weird stores that, although they sell kinda neat stuff, you never feel comfortable in, and LOTS of restaurants. Seriously, though, the food here is excellent. There are a lot of cheap, crappy places that really feed off of the tourism and popularity of Shakespeare here, of course, but I have found over the years that there are quite a few decent and even superb restaurants that have good prices too. The prices, however, you have to hunt for XD
The first play we went to see was called The White Snake. It is not written by Shakespeare, despite what the Oregon Shakespeare Festival might suggest, and it is a Chinese Legend turned into a play that ended up having a lot of musical elements. This was a theater that I had never gotten to use before, because it usually was always being repaired. So at last I was able to go past admiring from the outside and actually step foot in the theater. Ironically, I didn't care enough to get the name of the theater. In Ashland, actually, there are two theaters. This one, and the Elizabethan Theater, which is and outdoor theater. The two are very close to each other and are connected by a courtyard. The big building in the back center of the first and third pictures is the Elizabethan Theater btw. It has the yellow flags around it.
I actually managed to sneak a few pictures inside, but I'm not actually allowed to show you them due to the risk of my limbs being chopped off. I value those, thank you. And another thing that I value was The White Snake. I did not really know what to expect, with it being something nobody has ever really heard of before, but I trusted in these people who had never steered me wrong before (that is, play-wise). But whatever sparse expectations I did have, it exceeded them with flying colors. I will try not to spoil the plot, though I doubt that, out of the few people that read this, many will end up seeing The White Snake. But what I liked was that, while the plot was basic and goofy (with some serious elements, of course, seeing as it is a Chinese legend) the play visually was GORGEOUS. They used lighting to make a wintery mountain snowscape into a peaceful Autumn walk along the the lake. The set never changed once, but the props were so good that by themselves (and of course the skill of the actors and actresses in the play) they changed scenes. The music was of course a necessary component, as this was Chinese, and it was live and real. Taiko drums boomed and reverberated all across the ceiling, violins changed from soft, smooth temperament to a stressed, swift beat very swiftly, and all in all the play was a pleasure to behold.
We went home, it was 11:00, and then I whipped this up in about half an hour while I waited (and continue to wait) for the GSTL to start. It ended up taking an hour just because this is the first time I have used any sort of BBCode. I'm too tired to edit, so don't be harsh on me, I'm only 14 >.<;