Starting with Seattle Shakespeare Company’s (SSC) recent production of “Richard II” and continuing on with the company’s spring production of “The Importance of Being Earnest,” SSC and Shakespeare Walla Walla are partnering to bring professional classical theater productions to Eastern Washington. 

In summer 2008, SSC transferred its outdoor production of “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” to Walla Walla, Wash., to play at the Fort Walla Walla Amphitheatre, and out of that initial effort, Shakespeare Walla Walla was created. Since then, the city has gone on to build a new, indoor, performing arts venue, the Gesa Power House Theatre. However, the company has not been able to stage a mainstage show since its inaugural production of “The Merry Wives of Windsor.” 

With the expanded programming outreach, Shakespeare Walla Walla will add a Friday-morning performance of some shows for local schools.

SSC’s production of “Richard II” played at the Gesa Power House Theatre on Thursday, Feb. 6, through Sunday, Feb. 9, and Oscar Wilde’s “The Importance of Being Earnest” will be performed April 16 through 20. “Such Sweet Thunder Suite,” Duke Ellington’s 12-part suite inspired by Shakespeare’s works, will be performed in the spring.