Venus and Adonis

CoHo Summerfest – Week 2

JUNE 30 – JULY 3, 2016

Venus and Adonis

Shaking the Tree


Shakespeare’s first bestseller was an erotic poem, the story of the sex goddess Venus and her passionate obsession for the petulant pretty boy Adonis. He rejects the offer of being her divine toy boy, preferring to go boar-hunting instead, but finally gives in to her advances. He ends up gored by a ferocious wild boar, and Venus curses love for ever more. Venus and Adonis is Shakespeare’s genius in miniature: vivid characterisation, terrific storytelling and sublime poetry with sensational comic material followed by moving tragedy.


Writing by William Shakespeare

Performance by Matthew Kerrigan & Rebecca Ridenour

Direction by Samantha Van Der Merwe

Sound Design by Annalise Albright-Woods

Lighting Design by Jeff Woods


Matthew Kerrigan is so happy to be returning to the CoHo’s Summerfest stage, after performing his solo show- The Dissenter’s Handbook (Dario Fo)- last year.  Matthew has performed in seven Shaking the Tree productions: Wilde Tales (Oscar Wilde/Karin Magaldi), One Flea Spare (Naomi Wallace), Masque of the Red Death (Edgar Allan Poe), Suddenly Last Summer (Tennessee Williams), Passion Play (Sarah Ruhl), and A Doll’s House (Henrik Ibsen). He was also most recently seen in Peter and the Star Catcher at Portland Playhouse.

Rebecca Ridenour is delighted to be working for the first time on CoHo’s stage. Portland credits include: Actor 5/Sarah in We Are Proud To Present… with Artists Repertory Theatre, Equivocation and Gender Tree at Post 5 Theatre, Constance Leadbelly in Good Night Desdemona Good Morning Juliet with North West Classical, Miss Foxhill in Suddenly Last Summer with Shaking The Tree, Ophelia in ¡O Romeo! with Milagro Theater, Susan Brady in Playboy of the Western World with A.R.T, Goneril in Lear and Brutus in Julius Caesar with Bag and Baggage, Nancy in Hard Times Come Again No More with Sowelu Theater, and Spectravagasm I,II,III, VI,VII,VIII. Rebecca is from Santa Barbara, CA and a graduate of Portland Actors Conservatory class of 2012.


Shaking the Tree Theatre seeks to meld the boundaries of theatre and visual art by presenting audiences with thrilling and immersive theatrical experiences. Founded in 2003 by Samantha Van Der Merwe, Shaking the Tree uses innovative ways to inhabit space, creating a heightened surrounding that allows audiences to experience a deeper, more active connection to the work.


Special Thanks to Cargo and the artist Aimee Miller for use of the giant purple heart she created to hang in the store as a photo background.

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