It felt good last weekend, driving with purpose through the summer streets of a busy Indianapolis. And at the end of my vehicular journey, there were others. Others who understood that Shakespeare's work is best performed outside, under the stars, and with cicadas in surround sound. I appreciated that there were still more who understand his work remains remarkably and tragically relevant, even in 2015, and particularly so with two of his classics: Hamlet and Othello. It's the latter that the Garfield Shakespeare Company chose to perform last weekend with director Chris Burton introducing his hard work to a polite crowd of at least a 100 attendees, and of all ages. It was nice to see.
Free admission to the performance for any seat in the outdoor house (seat, bench, or lawn), plenty of free parking, and donation boxes at both entrances to the MacAllister Amphitheater allowed those who could give, and wanted to do so, the opportunity. Programs were also available which included a Director's Note, giving thanks, a polite parental guidance suggestion due to onstage violence, and an overview of The Tragedy of Othello: The Moor of Venice for those new to the scene of Elizabethan England.
According to the program, the Garfield Shakespeare Co. Also is participating in Bard Fest 2015, a gathering of Indianapolis theater companies, in the Carmel Arts District. Performances of not only Othello, but also As You Like It and Timon of Athens, run Oct 1st - 18th at the Studio 15 Theatre.
The majority of the Othello's cast for the August 22nd performance included many thespians in their debut roles for the Garfield Shakespeare Co., including, but not limited to the major roles of Othello (Tyler Gordon), Cassio (Zac Taylor), and Desdemona (Kate Ghormley). The stage was lively, the sound fantastic, and the audience's attention held.
Additional performances of Othello at Garfield Park's MacAllister Amphitheater: August 28th and 29th, September 4th and 5th, 8:00pm, Free Admission. Spring 2016 will see the 9th season of the Garfield Shakespeare Company's in Garfield Park and performances of Oscar Wilde's The Importance of Being Earnest and Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet.
Runs August 28, 29 and September 4, 5. See their website for details.