Free Shakespeare in the Park

 

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On a sweltering Tuesday in August, in my first full summer as a New York City resident, I was nervous and excited about the prospect of obtaining free tickets to A Midsummer Night’s Dream at the Delacorte Theater in Central Park. The day in 1982 was hazy, and the great lawn was full of picnickers all with numbers for a place in line. I was number 26. I had gotten there so early, maybe 7 AM to ensure my audience participation. And, I was far from the first one in line. But with a coffee and an H&H bagel for breakfast, I felt well-prepared. Hour after hour of baking in the sun, I was a lucky recipient of two tickets to the show.

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The production was magnificent. Directed by James Lapine, a name I wouldn’t recognize until after the first production of Into the Woods, Shakespeare’s mystical comedy was a seamless theater piece. Before the show I spotted Kevin Kline among other stars in the V.I.P. section. As a young aspiring actress, I felt part of something.   Christine Baranski was spot on as a comedic actress. William Hurt was dreamy.

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35 years later, Larry, my husband, and I celebrated our 20th anniversary seeing the latest production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream. Another wonderful evening of theater, this time with the wonderful singing voice of Marcelle Davies-Lashley. Although neither Larry nor I had ever heard of her before, we’ll be following her now. And, though the entire cast did a great job, our notable favorites were the indomitable Annaleigh Ashford, plus Danny Burstein and Kristine Neilsen.

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It was so much fun to share the evening with Larry. Between our work, our parents, our kid, and life’s needs, we don’t go out even half as much as we did twenty years ago. We very much felt like a part of something as as audience members, as New Yorkers, a supporters of Free Shakespeare in the Park, and as a couple. It’s more fun to laugh together. And, for that I appreciate a good night’s theater under the stars.

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(All images are from www searches)

 

One thought on “Free Shakespeare in the Park

  1. Good morning, This morning I read both this post, and The Fluctuating Value of Sleep.  Janet, I could not think of a better way of beginning my day!  The way you write is the way I enjoy reading a good piece. Setting the scene with detailed descriptions allows me to go back and actually feel as though I’m there, both at the Y Camp, and in the park in NY. By the way, did you ever go to Girl Scout overnight camp?

    Thank you and I love you – Sharyn

    From: janetzinn To: sfeldm13@yahoo.com Sent: Sunday, July 30, 2017 9:32 PM Subject: [New post] Free Shakespeare in the Park #yiv0223098469 a:hover {color:red;}#yiv0223098469 a {text-decoration:none;color:#0088cc;}#yiv0223098469 a.yiv0223098469primaryactionlink:link, #yiv0223098469 a.yiv0223098469primaryactionlink:visited {background-color:#2585B2;color:#fff;}#yiv0223098469 a.yiv0223098469primaryactionlink:hover, #yiv0223098469 a.yiv0223098469primaryactionlink:active {background-color:#11729E;color:#fff;}#yiv0223098469 WordPress.com | janetgzinn posted: ” On a sweltering Tuesday in August, in my first full summer as a New York City resident, I was nervous and excited about the prospect of obtaining free tickets to A Midsummer Night’s Dream at the Delacorte Theater in Central Park. The day in 1982″ | |

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