Public Theater’s Free Shakespeare in the Park: Richard III

It’s important, if not essential, for theatre makers to be ambitious and take risks. Equally crucial, especially in today’s climate, is considering diversity and inclusion when casting. However, when a production tries to tick all the boxes at once, that can muddle the play’s message. The latter is the unfortunate result of the production of Richard III, directed by Robert O’Hara and starring Danai Gurira in the title role. Though the efforts and intentions were admirable and excellent performances were given by all, throwing in everything and the kitchen sink made the show fall short of its possible impact by presenting

“Richard III” – Shakespeare in the Park

This summer, the Public Theater is celebrating the 60th season of Shakespeare in the Park, and it is one of the events that makes living in New York City a privilege. The first of the plays presented this year is the history play, "Richard III." Cards on the table right up front, "Richard III" is my favorite Shakespeare play, and the Wars of the Roses is a period in history I studied at some length. In short, I am an enthusiast, and readers deserve to know from whence these remarks come. Above all, this play is about power, its uses and mostly

Othello at the Delacorte Theater, Shakespeare in the Park

The story of Othello has always bothered me. Simply put, Othello has to be country-bumpkin gullible to fall victim to Iago's plotting – smitten and jealous or not. Chukwudi Iwuji, in the title role in the Public Theater's Shakespeare in the Park, turned in such a performance that I could almost believe Othello is that naïve. I have seen Othello more times than I can honestly remember. This production, though, is beyond memorable, especially but not exclusively because of Iwuji's performance. Much of the play hinges on the performance of Iago, and Corey Stoll delivers the goods. He is both

Mobile Unit: Henry V at The Public Theater

At any given moment in a theatrical season, it is likely there is a Shakespearean production being performed in both major and minor theatres and cities across the English-speaking world. The Bard’s relentless staying power is undeniable. But how do modern companies keep the work fresh and relevant, particularly the Histories, many of which are set in times, places and about people which seem to bear little significance on contemporary life in America? One simple answer is that at the root of all of these stories lie rich, complex and utterly human characters whose grappling with their struggles and delights in their

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