By Andrew Andrews
Summer in New York means free Shakespeare in the park... but what does that mean? On the high end, it means entering the lottery at The Public to score arena-style seats at the Delacorte Theater, delivered by an ensemble of the most credited thespians to utter the Bard’s words. A bit easier to access are the likes of a show in Bryant Park, where the sound system allows you to still follow along even from a distance. Or, if you’re lucky enough, you don’t even have to leave your neighborhood to catch a five-star performance, such as Smith Street Stage’s production in Carroll Park.
But those who truly crave summer Shakespeare don’t need to sit in rigid seating or hear it from Tony winners. Just give us a place and time to assemble on the grass amongst the bird and trees and passers-by; we’ll bring a blanket to sit on and a picnic to munch on; and while the cast belts out the verse we’ll merrily laugh and follow along.
That’s what we did yesterday at Boomerang Theater Company’s production of Twelfth Night, just inside the 69th Street entrance to Central Park on the Upper West Side. And while we certainly enjoy the arrival of dusk at the Delacorte just up the road, it can be every bit as rewarding to catch the passionate delivery of a smaller troupe like this, in a much less formal setting where you’re free to come and go if you need another slice of pizza or run out of wine. And—unlike at the Delacorte—if it happens to start raining during the performance, nobody will eject you for opening an umbrella to bear the show through to the end! So check out Twelfth Night before it closes July 15th, then come back here and tell us how you liked it! Whether you agree there’s much ado about watching Shakespeare in the grass, or insist that standing in the standby line for overpriced food and cramped metal seats is the only way to experience Shakespeare in Central Park, your reviews help others decide whether they should attend, and your ratings help us help you find future events—be they indoors or out, performances or activities—you’ll be glad you didn’t miss!3
Andrew Andrews attended Twelfth Night at Central Park in Manhattan on Saturday, June 23, 2018 @ 12:34pm to write this review.