Photo courtesy Summit Players Theatre

SHERWOOD — Wisconsin-based traveling theatre company Summit Players Theatre is returning to live, outdoor performance and will be performing Shakespeare’s Much Ado About Nothing from June 10-Aug. 20, 2022 in 23 different Wisconsin State Parks.

All performances will be free and preceded by a 45-minute educational workshop. The company will offer its workshop and performance at High Cliff State Park on June 11, 2022. The workshop will be at 5:30 p.m., and the show will be at 7:00 p.m.

“We’re thrilled to be entering our seventh year of performing in the parks,” stated Executive Director A.J. Magoon, a founding member of the organization. “There’s a reason Much Ado About Nothing is one of Shakespeare’s most popular comedies. It’s hilarious and heartfelt, and this version is perfect for audiences of all kinds.”

Each Much Ado About Nothing show will be 75 minutes long and completely free, in accordance with the company’s mission of creating Shakespeare anyone can afford, attend, and understand. Through a collaboration with the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, the Summit Players are also able to introduce audiences around the state to their local parks.

The group’s educational workshop, “Inside Shakespeare’s Story: Much Ado About Nothing” is new this year and offered before every show. It serves as a way for kids and “fun adults” to get comfortable with the play, Shakespeare’s language and the way nature played into his works. Participants take part in Shakespeare games and exercises culminating in performing a short scene.

This year, the Summit Players team boasts five new members—Maya Danks, Emma Knott, King Hang, Ogunde Snelling Jr and George Lorimer. All five will act in Much Ado About Nothing as well as serving as teaching artists for the company.

“I think the best part is that every year the program comes back, but there’s always something new” said Caroline Norton, Education Director and three-year alumna of the company’s tours. “The workshop content changes, the play changes and that means people who have seen our shows for years will enjoy everything just as much as people who have never seen us before.

Summit Players Theatre’s 2022 season is supported in part by grants from the Wisconsin Arts Board and Wisconsin Humanities Council, with funds from the National Endowments for the Arts and Humanities.

FULL SCHEDULE:

•June 10: Richard Bong State Recreation Area
Workshop: 5:30 p.m. | Show: 7:00 p.m.
•June 11: High Cliff State Park
Workshop: 5:30 p.m. | Show: 7:00 p.m.
•June 17: Yellowstone Lake State Park
Workshop: 5:30 p.m. | Show: 7:00 p.m.
•June 18: Wyalusing State Park
Workshop: 5:30 p.m. | Show: 7:00 p.m.
•June 19: Blue Mound State Park
Workshop: 1:00 p.m. | Show: 2:30 p.m.
•June 24: Three Bridges Park
Workshop: 5:30 p.m. | Show: 7:00 p.m.
•June 25: Copper Culture State Park
Workshop: 5:30 p.m. | Show: 7:00 p.m.
•June 26: Hartman Creek State Park
Workshop: 1:00 p.m. | Show: 2:30 p.m.
•July 8: Copper Falls State Park
Workshop: 5:30 p.m. | Show: 7:00 p.m.
•July 9: Pattison State Park
Workshop: 5:30 p.m. | Show: 7:00 p.m.
•July 15: Rib Mountain State Park
Workshop: 5:30 p.m. | Show: 7:00 p.m.
•July 16: Kohler-Andrae State Park
Workshop: 5:30 p.m. | Show: 7:00 p.m.
•July 17: Peninsula State Park
Workshop: 1:00 p.m. | Show: 2:30 p.m.
•July 18: Havenwoods State Forest
Workshop: 5:30 p.m. | Show: 7:00 p.m.
•July 22: Lake Kegonsa State Park
Workshop: 5:30 p.m. | Show: 7:00 p.m.
•July 23: Mirror Lake State Forest
Workshop: 5:30 p.m. | Show: 7:00 p.m.
•July 24: Roche-a-Cri State Park
Workshop: 1:00 p.m. | Show: 2:30 p.m.
•August 5: Wildcat Mountain State Park
Workshop: 5:30 p.m. | Show: 7:00 p.m.
•August 6: Perrot State Park
Workshop: 5:30 p.m. | Show: 7:00 p.m.
•August 6: Merrick State Park
Workshop: 1:00 p.m. | Show: 2:30 p.m.
•August 12: Lake Wissota State Park
Workshop: 5:30 p.m. | Show: 7:00 p.m.
•August 13: Interstate State Park
Workshop: 5:30 p.m. | Show: 7:00 p.m..
•August 19: Kettle Moraine State Forest – Pike Lake Unit
Workshop: 5:30 p.m. | Show: 7:00 p.m.
•August 20: Havenwoods State Forest
Workshop: 5:30 p.m. | Show: 7:00 p.m.

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By staff