The Bard is back in the Hudson Valley. At least, his spirit is. Thanks to the Hudson Valley Shakespeare Festival, anyone can experience the poetic works of one of English literature’s greatest icons. The fest, which takes place at the historic Boscobel House and Gardens in Garrison, kicks off on June 9 and runs until September 8. During that time, folkloric legends like Rapunzel and Red Riding Hood grace the stage alongside Shakespearean staples like Beatrice, Benedick, and King Cymbeline.
In anticipation of the opening, here are a few of our top picks.
June 9 – August 31
A true Shakespearean classic, Much Ado About Nothing tells the humorous tale of Beatrice and Benedick, two unlikely lovers who wage war on each other through wit and wordplay. Directed by May Adrales, the festival’s feature play is a must for anyone who enjoys the bumbling, nonsensical, and sweet romances at the heart of many of Shakespeare’s plays. If you’ve never seen the play before, we promise the surprise ending is one you won’t want to miss.
Posters by Hudson Valley Shakespeare Company
June 11 – July 27
Cymbeline may not be the most touted of the Bard’s major works, but it takes center stage – for good reason – at Hudson Valley Shakespeare Fest this summer. Director Davis McCallum tells the tale of Princess Imogen, a girl whose stepmother wants to kill her and whose father will not rescue her. A winding, wondrous plot, the story integrates fantastical characters, supernatural elements, and more than a few surprising twists and turns into the action-packed drama.
August 1 – September 8
Into the woods, it’s time to go! For the first time ever, Hudson Valley Shakespeare Festival debuts a musical (a Broadway hit, no less) under its summertime tent. A charming, twisted show, the play fractures iconic fairytales like Little Red Riding Hood and Rapunzel to warn audiences of the trouble with wishes, the after-effects of magic, and the problem with always wanting more. A delightful, albeit dark tale, Into the Woods charms with Tony Award-winning music and rich storylines for all.
For the full schedule of performances, which includes Cyrano and Julius Caesar, and to purchase tickets, visit the Hudson Valley Shakespeare Festival’s website or call 845.265.9575. If you’re in the mood for even more Shakespearean celebrations, head to the Festival’s Annual Summer Gala on June 1. With a cocktails, dinner, and dancing, plus a live auction and a special performance by the performing company, the special event, which honors local real estate icon Robert “Bob” A. McCaffrey of Robert A. McCaffrey Realty, is bound to be a memorable one.