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#DroughtVoices Joins Statewide Tour of 'California: The Tempest'

Cornerstone Theater Company

What do you get when you add Shakespeare to California?


Credit Ezra David Romero, Cornerstone Theater Company / Valley Public Radio
Valley Public Radio

The traveling Los Angeles based Cornerstone Theater Company is hosting a rendition of the play 'The Tempest' in Fowler this week called 'California: The Tempest.'

Fowler is just one of 10 stops along the company's journey. Other cities in the tour include Valley locales like Arvin and Lost Hills and larger cities like San Francisco and Los Angeles.

“We make new plays with and about communities,” says Cornerstone actor Peter Howard. “That means we collaborate.”

The cast is made up of 13 actors, including four professionals, plus 15 or more locals joining a chorus and other speaking parts.

A few weeks ago, Ashley Sparks with Cornerstone Theater Company and others, came to Fowler to explore the region for clues in how to write an original text for this week's production.

“We spend time talking to people and we do auditions, invite people to be part of the play,” Sparks says.

The Cornerstone Theater Company is all about engagement. They reached out to Valley Public Radio to include another topic in the play based on issues in the region.

The conversation turned to drought and now KVPR's Voices of the Drought Instagram and reporting series will be on display for the rest of the company's tour in the form of a six foot banner of submitted photos.

“We are interested thematically in the environmental impact of the drought and that theme has come up across the state,” Sparks says. “Everywhere we’ve gone when we ask what’s your hope or wish for California. In almost every community the answer is rain.”

At each venue, attendees are encouraged to Instagram or tweet photos about how the drought has affected them, their family or community using the hashtag #droughtvoices. The photos will be displayed on Valley Public Radio's drought blog www.voicesofthedrought.tumblr.com

So no matter what part of California you are in don't miss 'California: The Tempest' when it comes to your region of the Golden State. And while you're at it share your drought experience or photos with Valley Public Radio and Cornerstone Theater Company.

Listen to the interview above between Valley Edition host Joe Moore and Cornerstone's Peter Howard  and Ashley Sparks.


March 5, 6 & 7, 2015, outside at Panzak Park Merced St. and 3rd St. Fowler, CA 93625 
7:00pm Curtain.
Plenty of parking.
Tickets are Pay-What-You-Can (Suggested donation $10)
Bring non-perishable items for community food drive!
Call to reserve your seats: 1-800-578-1335

Ezra David Romero is an award-winning radio reporter and producer. His stories have run on Morning Edition, Morning Edition Saturday, Morning Edition Sunday, All Things Considered, Here & Now, The Salt, Latino USA, KQED, KALW, Harvest Public Radio, etc.
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