Stage set for summer and Shakespeare

shakespeare 2014Psychotic jealousy, tragedy, comedy and “Exit: pursued by bear” – Shakespeare’s “The Winter’s Tale” is coming to Midtown.

It will be the this year’s presentation in the 22nd season of the Heart of America Shakespeare Festival.

Performances will be at Southmoreland Park from June 17 to July 6, Tuesdays through Sundays and Monday June 30, but not July 4.

The production will include live music and a cast featuring festival veterans Bruce Roach as Leones, Cinnamon Schulz as Hermione and John Rensenhouse as Polixenes.

Executive Artistic Director Sidonie Garrett said she wanted to present the play because the group has not done it and too few others do. It is known as one of Shakespeare’s “problem plays” because of three acts of tragedy followed by two acts of comedy.

It also has the famous Shakespeare stage direction “Exit: pursued by bear,” and audiences should expect to see a bear.

The complex plot spans many years and deals with issues of “friendship, jealousy, loss and restored life,” Garrett said in a press release.

Shakespeare expert A. L. Rowse said in his anthology of Shakespeare’s plays: “The Winter’s Tale is a singularly beautiful, and an inspired play, from beginning to end….”

Admission is free but donations are encouraged. Information on donations and the play are at

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