Exploring the outcast, the excluded, and the other.

The theme of this summer’s Notre Dame Shakespeare Festival is, unfortunately, quite timely. What does Shakespeare have to say about those on the margins of society? Those who are cast out, forgotten, pushed aside? Quite a lot, as it turns out. Through three of his most famous works, this NDSF season explores what it means to exist on the edges of an arbitrarily selective culture.

“Poison his delight.”
So much has changed since Shakespeare’s time, and yet, so much remains the same. The Tragedy of Othello, the Moor of Venice, one of Shakespeare’s most powerful (and famed) dramas, comes ready-made with controversial themes; race, duty, jealousy, prejudice, and manipulation all swirl about in its tragic story.

And yet the hope of all dramatists, excoriating though their material can be, is to help us move forward into a better world. As director Cameron Knight notes in his season essay, “Will we continue to seek safety and community in hate? Or can we have the hard conversations and take the strong actions to make a world we all can be proud of?”

Othello comes to life in a bold new Professional Company production here at Notre Dame beginning August 14th. Starring in the title role is Esau Pritchett, a powerful and dynamic actor seen often onscreen (Orange is the New Black, Luke Cage, The Night Of, The Blacklist) and onstage (Broadway’s Vivian Beaumont Theater, Alabama Shakespeare Festival, Orlando Shakespeare Festival, and Pennsylvania Shakespeare Festival, among many others). The cast also includes veteran stage actor Robert Ramirez as Iago, Delaney Feener as Desdemona, Paul Hurley as Roderigo, and Chicago actor Maggie Kettering as Emilia.

  • WHEN: August 14-26, 2018
  • WHERE: Patricia George Decio Theatre, Marie P. DeBartolo Performing Arts Center, Notre Dame, IN

Tickets for Othello are $15-$40 and can be purchased here.

Giving back to our community.
The mission of the Fremont Park Foundation is both simple and grand: To provide positive activities for young people and adults alike. Indeed, the Fremont Park Foundation has made a huge impact in areas of the city that have, until now, been overlooked or underserved. Fremont Park itself has been bestowed with transformative new additions, including a splash pad, new playground equipment, and new basketball courts. Why not add some Shakespeare into the mix as well?

To that end: Shakespeare in Fremont Park, a seven-week program involving community based organizations in South Bend. Focused on the city’s west side, the effort will allow young people to work directly with adults to create, rehearse, and perform a theatre production inspired by Shakespeare. Performing July 26 & 27 at 7pm, the Shakespeare in Fremont Park performance of A Midsummer Night’s Dream features a cast drawn from local neighborhoods, in a bouncy and vibrant new staging directed by upcoming talent Marlon Burnley.

  • WHEN: Thursday, July 26 & Friday, July 27, 2018 at 7:00pm
  • WHERE: Fremont Park, 1800 Fremont St. ad W. Hamilton St., South Bend, IN

For more information about Shakespeare in Fremont Park, click here.

Don’t forget…
The Notre Dame Shakespeare Festival’s Touring Company performance of The Merchant of Venice is on the road now! Check out an exclusive musical performance from the show below, and be sure to catch one of their shows, touring now through August 20 to multiple outdoor locations across Michiana.

Visit shakespeare.nd.edu for more information.

Summer Means Shakespeare.

This summer’s Notre Dame Shakespeare Festival kicks off Friday, July 13. Lucky you. This six-week celebration of all things Shakespeare draws thousands of attendees from across the country and around the world every summer. And this year’s festival will be one to remember.

Boozy. Bawdy. Bloody good fun.
The festival kicks off with Shakespeare After Hours. This ain’t ya mama’s Shakespeare. It’s a little boozy. A little raunchy. And it’s a lot of fun. This freewheeling audience favorite packed the house in its inaugural year, and it’s back and bawdier than ever. Bring cash for the bar — and leave the kids at home. It’s Shakespeare on the scandalous side, and it’s not to be missed.

  • WHEN: Friday, July 13 at 9pm
  • WHERE: LangLab, 1302 High Street, South Bend, IN

This event is currently SOLD OUT. Missed tickets? Have no fear. Any tickets not claimed by 9pm on Friday, July 13 will be released. Check with us at the door!

Bite-sized bits of the Bard’s best.
So you’ve had your grown-up fun. Now get the rest of the family in on it. Enter ShakeScenes — a staple of the Notre Dame Shakespeare Festival for over 15 years. Come cheer on young people from across Michiana as they perform selections from Shakespeare’s greatest moments. It’s the perfect summer-afternoon entertainment, held annually in Notre Dame’s beautiful Washington Hall.

  • WHEN: Saturday, July 14 at 2pm
  • WHERE: Washington Hall, Notre Dame, IN

Reserve your FREE tickets for ShakeScenes here.

Laughter under the wide open sky.
Perennial favorite The Merchant of Venice is a fast-paced, pratfall-heavy comic joyride, brought to electric life by director Jemma Alix Levy and the NDSF Touring Company in their signature style. The tour kicks off July 15 at Taltree Arboretum and Gardens, and travels to multiple locations across Michiana through Aug. 20. Bring the family, pack a picnic dinner, and enjoy 80 minutes of family-friendly hilarity in the beautiful outdoor venue of your choice.

  • WHEN: Touring July 15-August 20
  • WHERE: Various locations across Michiana.

Click here for a complete list of NDSF Touring Company dates and times.

Check out a special performance from Merchant cast members Kayla Rundquist and Dana Gary!

And that’s just the beginning — look forward to Shakespeare in Fremont Park on July 26-27, and finally the Professional Company production of The Tragedy of Othello, the Moor of Venice from August 14-26.

Visit shakespeare.nd.edu for more information.