Next weekend marks the annual return of Nashville Shakespeare Festival to Centennial Park for the company's 25th offering of some of the Bard's best-known and best-loved works. We're wondering what production is your favorite from among the 10 most recent offerings from the company?
What production would you love to see again? Here's your opportunity to share your opinions. Welcome to our first Nashville.BroadwayWorld.com poll-and, really, who better to kick off this feature than the fine folks at Nashville Shakespeare Festival who've become such an integral part of our city's fabric of life?
Nashville Shakespeare Festival will perform Much Ado About Nothing, an enduring audience favorite among the playwright's comedies, from August 16 through September 16 at Centennial Park. The play, which marks the festival's 25th annual Shakespeare in the Park production, will be performed Thursdays through Sundays and Labor Day Monday starting at 7:30 p.m. each evening. The pre-show entertainment begins at 6:30 p.m. with food and drink available for purchase at the park. There is no admission charge, but a $10 donation is suggested and greatly appreciated.
Denice Hicks, the festival's artistic director, will direct this year's family-friendly production, which is dedicated to all men and women who have served in America's armed forces. Hicks has set the romantic comedy in post-World War II America. Evelyn O'Neal Brush will play Beatrice and Patrick Waller has the role of Benedick. The rest of the cast is full of Nashville favorites including Jeff Boyet, Martha Wilkinson, Phil Perry and Brad Brown.
"The end of World War II and the beginning of the baby boom is the perfect setting for this beloved story where love triumphs over adversity," Hicks said. "At the beginning of the play the boys are coming home from the war, and Beatrice (bearing some resemblance to Rosie the Riveter) sees little need for men, although Hero, her cousin, is anxious to get married. The witty banter and comical eavesdropping scenes will be played in the style of a broad, MGM Hollywood musical. Adding music to the story highlights the talents of our Nashville actors while enhancing the festive experience of Shakespeare in the Park."