A non-profit organization that was initially founded in 1998, Shakespeare by the Sea, is an annual free summer festival that focuses on the works of Shakespeare. With several events and venues all around Orange County, this is a great opportunity to soak up some culture.
Macbeth is a tragedy written by Shakespeare, and is believed to have been first performed in 1606. Telling the story of how political ambition can cause psychological and physical damage to a person, this is one of the shortest tragedies that Shakespeare has written, but also one of his most popular. This is one of the plays that is being performed by Shakespeare by the Sea this summer, with a number of performance dates to choose from.
The Taming of the Shrew
The other play that Shakespeare by the Sea will be hosting this summer is the Taming of the Shrew, which is a comedy, providing the perfect contrast to the tragedies of Macbeth. This play is believed to have been written between 1590 and 1592, and has been adapted several times since then for everything from the big screen to the opera to the ballet.
Tickets and Seating
Since all of the Shakespeare by the Sea performances are free to attend, tickets are not needed. When it comes to seating, this is on a first-come, first-served basis, so you may want to show up slightly earlier than you usually would, in order to guarantee yourself a prime spot. The style of seating varies between locations, but a blanket is always advisable, as it can turn quite chilly in the evenings.
Bard’s Box Stageside Dining
For those who want to take their theatre experience to the next level, Bard’s Box Stageside Dining is something that you need to sign up for. This section features premium seating with plush cushions and blankets, enabling you to really get cozy under the stars. A meal of your choice will also be provided, along with unlimited beverage refills and a selection of tasty treats from the dessert bar.
For those who have children who enjoy acting, then the Shakespeare by the Sea Kids Camp may be perfect for them. This will be running at the beginning of July, and is designed for children aged between seven and fourteen. The four days feature theatre games and rehearsals, and culminates in an abbreviated performance of one of Shakespeare’s most-loved plays, A Midsummer Night’s Dream.
Volunteering for Shakespeare by the Sea
Being a non-profit organization, Shakespeare by the Sea relies heavily on volunteers, and are always looking for more. For those who would like to help out a bit and support what they do, there are a number of opportunities available, from distributing fliers and helping with promotion to gathering support from the local community. Of course, if you are an aspiring actor, you could also audition to perform in a Shakespeare play yourself.
Shakespeare by the Sea has experienced great success since it begun, and is a community event that is always highly-anticipated. Even if you do not usually enjoy Shakespeare, these are shows that really bring together so much energy and passion, and will no doubt result in a truly memorable evening.