Although Shakespeare enthusiasts have had to witness several Bard based theater troupes fall on their luck and close their doors in recent years, there is hope for us yet. This summer downtown Toronto’s plays host to no less than four theater companies with shows by the Bard himself.
Soulpepper, one of the better known theater companies in the city, is paying homage to the Bard with their bold and beautiful production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream. One of Shakespeare’s lightest and most enjoyable and popular plays, Dream is a sure bet to please, but it’s only playing for a little while longer, so hop on over to their site and book some seats here.
Shakespeare in Action, a troupe geared towards getting the younger generation into the Bard, has their own version of A Midsummer Night’s Dream to offer. Already nominated for a DORA award, the show was enough of a success to have a limited return run from May 9-20. This cast focuses on the physical aspect of his work, perhaps in an effort to engage the younger audiences, but I can vouch that people of all ages will enjoy their work. Check out which dates and times can work for you here.
The Classical Theater Project has not one but two plays to offer this summer: my personal favourite, Twelfth Night, and the Bard’s renowned masterpiece Hamlet, Prince of Denmark. Their version of Twelfth Night takes a Vaudevillian turn to great success as displayed by its two DORA nods, while their Hamlet works to create a dark and intimate atmosphere. Both take the stage over the course of this May. Tickets for both productions can be found here.
Driftwood Theater Troupe, now celebrating its 17th year touring around the GTA, returns once again with a new production. Shakespeare’s shortest and bloodiest play, Macbeth takes center stage. Driftwood is a troupe I’ve trekked out to see for the last five years and it’s always worth the wait. Rain or shine, these guys put on great shows time and time again. I’ve never laughed harder at a production of Twelfth Night than I did at theirs last year when Malvolio strutted out in his yellow stockings cross gartered. These guys have genuine passion for their work and it spreads to the audience. If you enjoy Shakespeare, give Driftwood Theater a look here.