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South Dakota Shakespeare Festival Announces 2022 Season

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Mia Hilt and Carter Hoffer as twins Viola and Sebastian in the South Dakota Shakespeare Festival The SDSF presented “Twelfth Night, or What You Will” in June of 2021.
VERMILLION, S.D. – The South Dakota Shakespeare Festival (SDSF) is pleased to announce their 11th season with the classic tragedy “Othello,” running June 16-19, 2022. This will be the SDSF’s ninth professional summer production in Vermillion’s Prentis Park, and its first tragedy since “Macbeth” in 2015. “Othello” will also be streamed online.
The 2022 season and production are dedicated in honor and gratitude for the life and work of Mary Merrigan, a staunch supporter of the SDSF, who made immeasurable contributions to the Vermillion area community.
“Othello” will be directed by Tara Moses, a citizen of Seminole Nation of Oklahoma, Mvskoke, multi-award-winning playwright, co-artistic director of Red Eagle Soaring, co-Founder of Groundwater Arts, and a current M.F.A. candidate in Directing at Brown/Trinity Rep.
“I am thrilled to be making my debut with the SDSF,” said Moses. “‘Othello’ has the potential to dive deep into the nuanced and specific relationship with racism and bigotry in diverse communities, specifically Indigenous communities, and I am thankful for the opportunity to explore it.”
The SDSF is excited to once again hire professional actors from across the country, bringing a diverse company of local and national actors to the cast of this timeless play. Information about auditions will be available soon.
“Othello” is one of Shakespeare’s most acclaimed, most often-produced, and most controversial plays. The accomplished general Othello is driven into a jealous rage by his aide Iago, who envies Othello’s seemingly charmed life. By cunningly manipulating perceptions and reality, Iago convinces Othello that his new bride Desdemona is having an affair with the handsome young officer Cassio. Shakespeare takes a deeply personal dive into themes of love, trust, prejudice, marriage and honor. The play has fascinated artists and audiences for centuries in part due to its dual lead roles: Othello, the first sympathetic and three-dimensional black character written in Western drama, and Iago, the deliciously evil villain you love to hate.
Further information about the production and the SDSF’s outreach, educational programming and related events will be available in the coming months.
The mission of the SDSF is to engage, connect and inspire communities by exploring our shared human experiences through inclusive, professional Shakespeare productions and theatre arts education. Our values encompass access, inclusion, integrity and artistic excellence.
Since 2012, the SDSF has been producing free, world-class Shakespeare in the Park in Vermillion, South Dakota, accompanied by a wide array of education and engagement programming, through partnerships with local and regional schools and organizations. The SDSF values diversity and inclusion in its work, and it seeks to create theatre and build audiences that reflect and nourish the diversity of its communities. Since its inception, and in keeping with our mission, all festival events are free and open to the public.
More information can be found at
USD’s College of Fine Arts encourages students to pursue their chosen professional field in art, music or theater through their study with nationally recognized faculty who are working professionals. Students learn and grow to be professional fine artists with great job potential anywhere in the country. The college offers opportunities for additional real-world experiences through work with guest artists, study tours abroad and opportunities at the National Music Museum and the University Art Galleries on the Vermillion campus and the Black Hills Playhouse in Custer State Park. The college brings more than 80 guests artists to campus annually to work with students.
Founded in 1862 and the first university in the Dakotas, the University of South Dakota is the only public liberal arts university in the state, with 202 undergraduate and 84 graduate programs in the College of Arts & Sciences, School of Education, Knudson School of Law, Sanford School of Medicine, School of Health Sciences, Beacom School of Business and College of Fine Arts. With an enrollment of nearly 10,000 students and more than 400 faculty, USD has a 16:1 student/faculty ratio, and it ranks among the best in academics and affordability. USD’s 18 athletic programs compete at the NCAA Division I level.


Hanna DeLange
USD News


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