SARATOGA SPRINGS – The Saratoga Shakespeare Company, Saratoga’s longest running professional theater, is hosting its fifteenth summer of free outdoor plays in Congress Park in downtown Saratoga Springs. This year, the company has expanded its performances to three shows on three different stages by partnering with Skidmore College.
Running from July 21 to August 2 in Congress Park is the production of Shakespeare’s romantic comedy “Love’s Labour’s Lost.” Shows will run Tuesdays through Saturdays at 6 p.m. and Sundays at 3 p.m. To celebrate Saratoga Springs’ centennial, this production will be set in 1915 Saratoga and will integrate ragtime music and dance into this classic play.
“Everyone involved is really enjoying the language of this play. There’s a lot of word play, rhyming verse and wit,” said David Gerard, associate artistic director for the company. “The setting in 1915 also makes it a great period to costume for. We’re having a lot of fun with this. It’s just a terrific company of actors this year.”
In “Love’s Labour’s Lost,” King Ferdinand and his companions have promised to seclude themselves from women for three years in order to study and fast. However, their oath is threatened when the Princess of France and her ladies come to stay at the court. Love and comedy combine for a unique, fresh take on the Bard’s famous play.
“Our audiences like the comedies,” said Girard. “The best part for me is having the audience be a part of the show. We invite the audience into the conversation to establish a relationship with them and build a connection. It makes the play come alive.”
Audiences can not only look forward to “Love’s Labour’s Lost” in Congress Park, but they can also see the company perform “The Comedy of Errors” August 6 to 8 at 6.p.m. at Skidmore College’s Suzanne Corbet Thomas Amphitheater.
Though it is not Shakespeare, the company will also be producing “Shipwrecked!” a play about a Victorian gentleman who turns seafaring wanderer. This will be held indoors at the Janet Kinghorn Bernhard Theater’s Blackbox Theater at Skidmore College from August 5 to 9. Performances will begin at 8 p.m. with the Sunday matinee beginning at 2 p.m.
“Love’s Labour’s Lost” and “The Comedy of Errors” are all free shows while “Shipwrecked!” is $20.15 for adults and $15 for children, seniors and the military. For more information visit saratogashakespeare.com, Saratoga Shakespeare’s Facebook page or call 518-528-1677.