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King University Theatre Department Presents “Shakespeare the KING” Oct. 1-3

Shakespeare the KINGBRISTOL, Tenn., Sept. 16, 2015 – The Theatre Department at King University will present the original play “Shakespeare the KING” in the Fine Arts Theatre on King’s main campus in Bristol, Tenn., during the University’s Family Weekend Oct. 1-3 at 7:30 p.m. each evening.

The Theatre Department’s opening production, “Shakespeare the KING,” is written by Kiara Pipino, assistant professor of Theatre, along with her former student Jason Flannery, a graduate of Grand Valley State University and current MFA Directing Candidate at Lindenwood University in St Louis, Mo. The comedy merges several of the greatest works of Shakespeare, including “Hamlet,” “Macbeth,” “Othello,” “Twelfth Night,” “Pericles,” “As You Like It,” and “The Tempest,” with the modern world of video games, specifically Super Mario.

Pipino says, “The ambition of the play, ‘Shakespeare the KING,’ is to bring the world and works of William Shakespeare to young audiences in a way that is accessible, understandable, and most importantly engaging to what may be a skeptical audience. The show takes this struggle between archetypes and layers it with an artistic video game concept, which will hopefully paint the content in a new light for the young audience, showing that the works of the Bard will always find ways to stay fresh, applicable, and presentable to audiences of any age.”

The production is under the direction of Pipino and designed by Christopher R. Slaughter, associate professor and chair of the Theatre Department at King University.

“‘Shakespeare the KING’ opens a season dedicated to William Shakespeare,” says Slaughter. “We are honoring the greatest playwright in history throughout the 2015-16 season in remembrance of the 400th anniversary of Shakespeare’s death. We hope this first production will intrigue and engage the audience, and compel them to join us for all of our productions this season.”

General admission tickets for the performances of “Shakespeare the KING” are $5 general admission, and free for King University students, faculty, and staff with a King University ID. Tickets will be available at the door one hour before each performance. Seating is limited, and, due to the staging, audience members cannot be seated once the production begins. For more information, call Chris Slaughter at 423.652.4800 or


King University is a Presbyterian-affiliated, doctoral-level comprehensive university. Founded in 1867 as King College, the University offers more than 90 majors, minors, pre-professional degrees and concentrations in fields such as business, nursing, law, medical and health sciences, pharmacy, education, and humanities. Graduate programs are offered in business administration, education, and nursing. A number of research, off-campus learning opportunities, and travel destinations are also available. King University is a NCAA Division II and a Conference Carolinas member with 25 varsity sports. For more information about King University, visit King University does not discriminate against academically qualified students of any race, color, national or ethnic origin, sex, age, or disability. King University is certified by SCHEV to operate locations in Virginia. For more information on SCHEV certification, contact the King University office at Southwest Virginia Community College, 309 College Road, Richlands, VA 24641.