The Princeton Rep Shakespeare Festival's staging of A Midsummer Night's Dream in an expanded free season in Princeton, NJ, closes July 23 to make way for The Taming of the Shrew Aug. 4-27, in Pettoranello Gardens.
Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream began June 30 under the direction of New Yorker Jeff Cohen, with Obie Award winner David Greenspan as Bottom and "Guiding Light" actor Bradley Cole as Theseus and Oberon. The upcoming Taming of the Shrew is directed by Princeton Rep artistic director Victoria Liberatori.
The 16-year-old Princeton Rep began its summer Shakespeare initiative in 1995 on the Green at Palmer Square in downtown Princeton. This season's move to bucolic Pettoranello Gardens - a grassy hill with wooden benches looking onto a natural, neutral playing area -- helps accommodate longer runs, more than one show and more theatregoers. The natural amphitheatre is located in Community Park North, Mountain Avenue and Route 206.
The Equity company of Midsummer also includes Queen Esther (of the Rent tour and Joe's Pub in Manhattan) as Hippolyta and Titania, Michael Cannis as Peter Quince and Liam Christopher O'Brien as Robin Goodfellow or Puck. Non-Equity cast includes Justin Donham, Adam Hirsch, Sarah Lippman, David Prete, James Rana, Carlos Rojas and Karen Traynor. Russian-born Alexander Tressor is the choreographer. Designers are Genny Wynn (lighting), Susan Soetaert (costumes) and Mark Bloom (set).
Admission is free, but a $10 donation is suggested. Performances play 7 PM Fridays-Sundays. For ticket distribution information, call (609) 688 0381 or try the web site at www.princetonrep.com.
-- By Kenneth Jones