Free Shakespeare on the Common: Romeo and Juliet
One of Greater Boston’s most beloved traditions, Commonwealth Shakespeare Company’s Free Shakespeare On the Common takes up residence once again with Shakespeare’s drama, Romeo and Juliet proving that the power of love triumphs over divisions and differences. The Capulet and Montague families have been engaged in a multi-generational feud, causing much distress and havoc in the city of Verona; but when young Romeo, son of the Montagues, meets Juliet, the daughter of the Capulets, their immediate love blossoms and accepts no barriers, with tragic results.
When: Tuesday – Saturday performances at 8pm; Sundays at 7pm (Off Mondays). There will be one 3pm matinee performance on Saturday, August 5.
Where: Boston Common, at the Parkman Bandstand.
Directed by Allegra Libonati.
Behold William Shakespeare and George Bernard Shaw’s most famous creations side by side, in repertory, in HAMLET/ SAINT JOAN. He is the dark, enigmatic prince obsessed with seeking revenge for his father’s death. She is the steadfast rebel who challenged the powers of the Church to restore France to greatness. Iconic figures from two great dramatic classics — Hamlet and Saint Joan — are brought vividly to life in two riveting, unexpectedly funny, stripped-down stagings by four actors from Bedlam, the acclaimed New York City theater company, directed by ERIC TUCKER.
Prince Hamlet is depressed. Having been summoned home to Denmark to attend his father’s funeral, he is shocked to find his mother already remarried — to his father’s brother, Claudius. Worse still, Claudius has had himself crowned king despite the fact that Hamlet is heir to the throne. No wonder Hamlet suspects foul play. Bedlam brings their unique performance style to Shakespeare’s greatest play — arguably the greatest play in the English language.
In this epic story, Shaw paints Joan of Arc not as a saint, witch or madwoman, but a farm girl who is an illiterate intellectual, a true genius whose focus on the individual rocked the Church and State to their core. Four actors perform all 24 roles in Bedlam’s production of George Bernard Shaw’s Saint Joan, declared “Irresistible! Ferocious!” and “A force of nature!” by the New York Times.
“No troupe in New York these days rides the storytelling momentum of theater more resourcefully or enthusiastically than Bedlam.” – The New York Times
“Thanks To Shakespeare” with CHRISTOPHER RICKS
Acclaimed literary critic and scholar CHRISTOPHER RICKS, WILLIAM M. and SARA B. Warren Professor of the Humanities at Boston University, presents the second in a new series of talks on Shakespeare.
Join him as he considers how Boston University poets, past and present, further Shakespeare’s art. Featuring poems by David Ferry, Louise Glueck, Geoffrey Hill, George Kalogeris, Alberto de Lacerda, Robert Lowell, Jill McDonough, Elise Partridge, Robert Pinsky, Anne Sexton, Derek Walcott, and Rosanna Warren.
The Shakespeare Time-Traveling Speakeasy
The Shakespeare Time-Traveling Speakeasy, led by REGIE GIBSON, is a musical and literary concert focusing on the background, mysteries, works, and impact of William Shakespeare. The Speakeasy uses American musical forms (blues, jazz, hiphop, country, etc…) as backdrop for stories, poems, songs and humor relating to “the Cat from Strat” (Stratford upon Avon, that is). Imagine a walking-tour through 16th century London narrated in “beat poet” style. Or, an Elizabethan sonnet liberated from the cage of its page and soulfully sang. Or, picture a verbal smackdown between characters from Shakespeare’s plays that you, as a member of the audience, will get to judge! Whether you are scholar or novice, student or teacher, Shakespeare lover or loather, the Shakespeare Time-Traveling Speakeasy will engage you and give you a new appreciation for “The Bard”.
Literary performer REGIE GIBSON has lectured and performed widely in the U.S., Cuba, and Europe. As a representative of the U.S., Regie received the Absolute Poetry Award in Monfalcone, Italy. He and his work appear in “love jones”, a feature-film based on events in his life. Gibson has been featured on HBO’s Def Poetry Jam, various NPR programs, nominated for a Boston Emmy, and has been a featured presenter for several TEDx events. He’s served as a consultant for the National Endowment for the Arts, James Madison’s Montpelier and is Poet-in-Residence for Mass Poetry. Regie has performed with & composed texts for, The Boston City Singers, The Mystic Chorale, the Handel+Haydn Society, and is a recent recipient of a 2017 Brother Thomas Fellowship for Artistic Excellence from The Boston Foundation.
Can’t get enough Shakespeare? Join other enthusiasts at the Athenæum’s Shakespeare Discussion Group for readings and discussions every second Wednesday of the month at 6:00 p.m.
Independent Film Festival Boston: Nothing is Truer Than Truth, A Documentary about Shakespeare
NOTHING IS TRUER THAN TRUTH will premiere at the Independent Film Festival Boston. Please help us celebrate at the historic Brattle Theatre in Harvard Square on SUNDAY APRIL 29TH at 1:00 P.M. There will be a post-screening Q&A session with director Cheryl Eagan-Donovan, and cast and crew from the film, followed by a reception. Festival badges and tickets are available at IFFB.org.
NOTHING IS TRUER THAN TRUTH introduces Edward de Vere, Seventeenth Earl of Oxford, A-list party boy on the continental circuit, who spent a year and a half in Venice and traveling in Italy, learning about commedia dell’arte and collecting the experiences that would become known as the works of Shakespeare. Filmed in Venice, Verona, Mantua, Padua, and Brenta, the film ventures to actual sites De Vere visited in 1575-76, including the settings for The Merchant of Venice, Othello, Romeo and Juliet, and Two Gentlemen of Verona. The film features renowned Shakespeare scholars, actors, and directors, including Sir Derek Jacobi, Mark Rylance, Tina Packer, and Diane Paulus, and argues that De Vere’s bisexuality is the reason for the pseudonym “Shake-speare.”
Grub Street instructor and screenwriting consultant Cheryl Eagan-Donovan’s debut feature All Kindsa Girls screened at film festivals and art house theaters in London, Toronto and the U.S., was short-listed for the PBS series POV, and is featured in Paul Sherman’s book Big Screen Boston. She served on the Board of Directors of Women in Film & Video New England, The Next Door Theater, and The Shakespeare Oxford Fellowship. She teaches writing, literature, and filmmaking and has published articles on Shakespeare and film.