Tag Archives: Freewill Shakespeare Festival

A strange fairy tale, rescued magically by Time from tragedy: The Winter’s Tale in the park

By Liz Nicholls, 12thnight.ca There is a strange magic about a play where brute tragedy gives way to pastoral comedy, realism mixes it up with romance, and dramatic scenes abut presentational vaudeville. The Winter’s Tale has the optical weirdness of … Continue reading

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Boys will be boys: taking the mickey out of male bonding in Two Gents, a bitter comedy in the park

By Liz Nicholls, 12thnight.ca A passing squirrel, who turned his back to the stage, was not convinced. And the wind whispering through the poplars sounded downright skeptical this weekend in the park when a lovestruck young man tore himself away … Continue reading

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Camping out with Shakespeare in the park: Freewill Shakespeare Festival returns with an intriguing pair of plays

By Liz Nicholls, 12thnight.ca “If this be magic, let it be an Art as lawful as eating.” — The Winter’s Tale The actors pull up at rehearsals in shorts on their bikes, dodging geese (mosquitoes, squirrels  and the odd coyote), … Continue reading

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From story to myth: Lake of the Strangers asks “how do we heal?”

By Liz Nicholls, 12thnight.ca In Lake of the Strangers, the solo play that premieres this week at the Backstage Theatre, you’ll meet two Indigenous brothers, 10 and seven, on a mission out in the natural world. “It’s their last summer … Continue reading

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An exciting new Hamlet for the park: a review

By Liz Nicholls, 12thnight.ca “Is not this something more than fantasy?” The guards on duty in Elsinore are talking about a dead king who’s been appearing nightly from behind his official royal portrait. They’re right on another count, too.  Something … Continue reading

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The world’s a zany, baffling place: The Comedy of Errors in the park

By Liz Nicholls, 12thnight.ca At a crucial mistaken-identity moment in The Comedy of Errors — a transaction-gone-askew involving a goldsmith, a chain, and a wayward husband arranging delivery on pricey bling for someone not his wife — a magpie perched … Continue reading

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Taking comedy and tragedy to the park: the Freewill Shakespeare Festival returns

By Liz Nicholls, 12thnight.ca There’s a vast expanse of theatrical distance between the two shows you’ll see alternating in the outdoor Shakespeare festival that opens tonight in the river valley. Tonight’s show is a comedy, and a farcical one at that; … Continue reading

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30 summers of Shakespeare in the great outdoors

By Liz Nicholls, 12thnight.ca ‘Tis wondrous strange, but there was a time, now receding into the mists of the past, when Shakespeare (Will to his friends) didn’t camp out in the river valley every summer. When you couldn’t drift down … Continue reading

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But hark, a new play! Thou Art Here at Freewill Shakespeare Festival

By Liz Nicholls, 12thnight.ca “For the long and short is, our play is preferred….”  (IV, ii, A Midsummer Night’s Dream) In one of the most reliably hilarious (and heartwarming) sequences in all of Shakespeare, a co-op of serious and inept … Continue reading

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Fun with the macabre: two veteran actors together at last in Fly Me To The Moon at Shadow Theatre

By Liz Nicholls, 12thnight.ca “We’re two caregivers, two nobodies,” says Frances to Loretta in the dark-hued Irish comedy that opens tonight on the Varscona stage. In Fly Me To The Moon, by the Belfast playwright Marie Jones, an initiative that … Continue reading

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