2012/13 season > The White Snake
Mary Zimmerman is mesmerizing. From Metamorphoses to The Arabian Nights, audiences have embraced her enchanting adaptations of epic tales. Now the Tony Award-winning director casts a spell with The White Snake, a classic romance from Chinese legend. As she falls for a charming young man, a snake spirit discovers what it means to be human. But a monk objects, and the bride must unveil her magical powers to save their love. With the alluring and hypnotic White Snake, Zimmerman unwraps another exquisite gift for the holidays.
The White Snake has charmed audiences and critics alike. Check out a preview of this exquisite show.
“Fabulous…Enchanting…A buoyant Armageddon of human and puppet actions…The White Snake has been transformed from evil, man-eating demon to tragic romantic heroine, a history slyly invoked by Zimmerman at every ‘fork’ (get it?) in her tale…Wondrous puppetry delights the eye, the ink clouds of Shawn Sagady’s projections dissolve into Chinese landscapes and Daniel Ostling’s set sprouts cabinets that may open to reveal a boudoir or something more startling.”—San Francisco Chronicle
“Intoxicating…A shimmering spectacle about two snakes who dare to cross over into the human world. The seventh Zimmerman creation to play Berkeley Rep, it’s the ideal holiday fare, gorgeously-appointed and whimsical but also quite meaningful…There’s not a moment in this 100-minute visual feast when the eye isn’t entranced and the heart touched.”—San Jose Mercury News / Bay Area News Group
“Wonderful…an epic adventure and an intimate love story…A giant holiday gift just waiting to be unwrapped and savored by audiences…The White Snake is theatrical storytelling at its very best, a fusion of stunning imagery, captivating music and, best of all, characters whose stories cut straight to the heart…It’s all just gorgeous and beautiful and utterly enchanting.”—Theater Dogs
“Terrific…Tony Award-winning director Mary Zimmerman’s moving world-premiere production already has audiences grasping for appropriate superlatives. The work is a remarkable piece of theatrical imagination, the kind Zimmerman has specialized in with productions such as Metamorphoses, Argonautika, The Notebooks of Leonardo Da Vinci and Arabian Nights…Zimmerman has created an epic tale of love and sacrifice with spectacular visual appeal, plenty of humor and remarkable emotional depth.”—Sacramento Bee
VIDEO: Mary Zimmerman on The White Snake
In this three-part video from the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, Mary Zimmerman talks about the story (part 1), her writing process (part 2) and her early thoughts on the production (part 3).
AUDIO: Mary Zimmerman on NPR’s Forum
The Tony Award-winning director talks about The White Snake and why Berkeley Rep is her home away from home in this five minute interview.
PRINT: SF Chronicle interview
Mary Zimmerman talks about how The White Snake connects to everything from buddy movies and big-hair bands to marriage equality and the Tang Dynasty.
A picture’s worth…
A sneak peek into how we designed the show’s art.
Bamboo and bikini wax
A behind-the-scenes peek at…scenery!