Actors’ Theatre of Columbus returns this Summer with their outdoor classic theatre under the stars in German Village’s Schiller Park.
The theme for the 2021 series of plays is the unexpected “Changes.”
ATC’s summer season kicks off with two plays of Shakespearean proportions including Much Ado About Nothing (May 27 – June 20) and Carlyle Brown’s The African Company Presents Richard III (June 24 – July 18), plus Sarah Ruhl’s Eurydice (July 22 – August 8), and Frances Hodgson Burnett’s The Secret Garden (August 12 – September 5), a first-ever collaboration with Columbus Children’s Theatre to conclude the season.
“The plays we are presenting this season reflect on the importance of those unexpected moments that lead to romance, to grief, or to defiant new freedom in the face of oppression,” shared Artistic Director Philip J. Hickman. “Life is full of the unexpected. The plans we make are often disrupted by chance meetings, by tragedy, by fickle fate, and even by love. The common theme is the revelation of hope that is found when people find their way through the end of what they expected, into the new beginning of what has come after. Peace can be found after loss, and triumph after tragedy. There can be hope even when we don’t know what comes next.”
Plans to ensure distancing among the audience are tba, but they plan to make the experience safe for all in attendance. Plays are free, and donations are encouraged and vital to the continued success of Actors’ Theatre. Memberships with Actors’ Theatre are also available by visiting www.theactorstheatre.org/membership/. Memberships will get you great swag and reserved seating.
Performances are Thursdays through Sundays and begin at 8:00 p.m. Pack a picnic, bring your family or friends, and enjoy the evening!
The summer performances are under the stars (dress accordingly), and occasionally, under adverse weather conditions. The decision to cancel a performance is not made until 7:30 pm and will be posted on the website and Facebook page.
Theatre in the Park with Actors’ Theatre of Columbus Show Schedule
MUCH ADO ABOUT NOTHING by William Shakespeare
May 27 – June 20, 2021
Directed and Adapted by Philip J. Hickman and Cat McAlpine
Too much time and too much wine finds a group of friends and an unlucky housekeeper trying to pass the time at an 1800s lake house. An ad hoc performance of Shakespeare’s Much Ado About Nothing keeps the estate lively as a summer evening grows dark. Together they discover love, laughs, and timing as the product of their boredom becomes a moving performance that reminds us all: the heart wants what it wants.
THE AFRICAN COMPANY PRESENTS RICHARD III by Carlyle Brown
June 24 – July 18, 2021
Directed by David J. Glover
While based on events prior to emancipation, The African Company Presents Richard III manages to evoke the dichotomy of Black Americans’ experiences throughout history: the constant battle to improve Black experience and culture while also battling for acceptance in a white-dominated power structure. A funny, bold portrayal of a group of people trying to escape in the poetry of a theatrical giant, The African Company also shows us how universal Shakespeare’s work is, and how it can inspire those who engage with it. This play is for anyone who fights for – no, demands the right to be seen; who understands that “classic” does not always mean white; who understands that smart, creative Black people will always overcome when pushed to the brink.
EURYDICE by Sarah Ruhl
July 22 – August 8, 2021
Directed by Beth Josephsen
While the classical Greek myth at the root of this play focuses on Orpheus, and his attempts to retrieve his bride from Hades after tragedy befalls on their wedding day, this modern retelling examines events from the female perspective. A look at familial, romantic, and forbidden love in the afterlife, when the lines of reality and fantasy are blurred, what does it take to have one last look at the one you love?
THE SECRET GARDEN by Frances Hodgson Burnett
August 12 – September 5, 2021
Adapted for the stage by Neil Duffield, Directed by Philip J. Hickman
An orphan girl is sent away from the only home she’s ever known into a world that seems to be decaying in front of her eyes. A boy who has been hidden away and believes himself to be incapable of a real life is challenged to grow in ways he never expected. A long-neglected sanctuary is rediscovered, sowing seeds of life and hope that blossom from the weeds and wreck of everything the children had once expected.
Looking for more outdoor fun and entertainment?
Friday, October 22, 2021
Saturday, October 23, 2021
Sunday, October 24, 2021
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