Condensing Shakespeare's work to two hours of live theater seems like an impossible task, but The Reduced Shakespeare Company did it and gave the world a hilarious romp through some of the greatest plays ever written. But if a theater company has a low regard for these plays and their playwright, then The Complete Works becomes more of a mockery than an homage. The Renton Civic Theatre is in its 20th season and has performed only one Shakespeare play to date. They've staged The Complete Works, however, twice. Does this sound backwards to anyone else? If you are going to perform Shakespeare, reduced or not, it seems to me a base level of respect is needed, and that was just what was missing from this performance. The script itself is hilarious and, for lack of a better word, educational. But the line between irreverence and insult is a thin one indeed, and one this production stumbles across again and again. DYLAN SLADKY 7:30 p.m. Thurs., 8 p.m. Fri.-Sat., 2 p.m. Sun. Ends March 2.
Fridays, Saturdays, 8 p.m.; Sundays, 2 p.m.; Thursdays, 7:30 p.m. Starts: Feb. 15. Continues through March 2, 2008