Their first production was a comedy, Two Gentlemen of Verona. The next year heralded the tragic Coriolanus, which allowed the women a rare chance to show off their stage combat skills. Their third major production, which opens this week, is Measure for Measure, drama with a comedic undercurrent. This time, in response to the many male actors who have asked to join the troupe, all the women's roles will be played by men, and all the men's roles by women. The plot involves a corrupt government official who tries to seduce a nun by threatening to execute her brother if she won't come to his bed.
With its goal of bringing Shakespeare to the entire public, not just to serious theatergoers, Woman's Will stages all productions in public parks, with no admission fee. Measure for Measure runs each Saturday and Sunday from July 15 to Aug. 20 at 1 p.m. at various sites in Berkeley, Oakland, Foster City, Ross, and San Francisco. This weekend's opening is at John Hinkel Park, Arlington & Somerset, in North Berkeley. For information, or directions to any of the venues, call 567-1758 or visit www.womanswill.org.