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OSF set performance record in 2019

The Oregon Shakespeare Festival set a record in 2019 when it delivered 850 performances of its 11 productions, the most shows in a single season in the company’s 84-year history, according to a Wednesday news release.

The 2019 season kicked off March 1 and wrapped up Oct. 27. The company reported that attendance dropped slightly this year, from 361,838 in 2018 to 360,199 in 2019. Ticket revenue in 2019 was $21.3 million, down from $21.6 million in 2018. OSF staged 811 performances in 2018.

Productions offered during the 2019 season included “Mother Road,” “How to Catch Creation,” “As You Like It,” “Macbeth,” “All’s Well That Ends Well,” “Alice In Wonderland,” “La Comedia of Errors,” “Indecent,” “Between Two Knees,” “Hairspray — The Broadway Musical” and “Cambodian Rock Band.”

The festival moved 38 performances scheduled for the open-air Allen Elizabethan Theatre to Ashland High School, a plan intended to help audiences avoid potential wildfire smoke.

Except for one significant wildfire that sent smoke into the air for about a week, Southern Oregon dodged a repeat of the smoky 2017 and 2018 summers.

The performances at the high school sold 13,751 tickets, OSF reported. No Allen Elizabethan Theatre outdoor shows were canceled.

OSF’s 2019 free outdoor Green Shows drew 55 performance groups, with 66 performances presented to about 33,000 audience members.

Season highlights included off-site performances of “La Comedia of Errors” throughout the Rogue Valley, and a naturalization ceremony for new U.S. citizens, held Aug. 26 at the Angus Bowmer Theatre.

OSF also made multiple upgrades to its facilities to improve air quality, including improvements to air conditioning components and related equipment, and replacement of old windows that did not seal well.

Reach web editor Ryan Pfeil at 541-776-4468 or rpfeil@rosebudmedia.com. Follow him on Twitter @RyanPfeil.

OSF Elizabethan Theatre Photo by T. Charles Erickson