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Summer Shakespeare series opens Thursday night

Seattle Shakespeare Company cast and crew members prepare the set for rehearsing
Seattle Shakespeare Company cast and crew members prepare the set for rehearsing 'The Tempest' in Mercerdale Park on Tuesday, July 9. Opening night is Thursday in Luther Burbank Park, and performances are scheduled through mid-August.
— image credit: Rebecca Mar/Staff Photo

The language of Elizabethan England will once again be heard on Mercer Island when the summer Shakespeare park series begins this week.

The Seattle Shakespeare Company is presenting “The Tempest” and “Henry V” at the Luther Burbank Park amphitheater and other local parks during the next five weeks, through Aug. 11. There is no cost for admission.

Opening night is Thursday, July 11, with “The Tempest” starting at 7 p.m. The play was written in 1611 and is set on an island, after a shipwreck. The Seattle Shakespeare Company describes it as a “magical tale where revenge yields to forgiveness.” The production has 14 cast members.

During the weekend of Summer Celebration, “The Tempest” will be performed at 2 p.m. on Saturday, July 13, in Luther Burbank Park. “Henry V,” about a young 15th century king who “tests his mettle in battle against overwhelming odds,” opens on the Island at 7 p.m. on Sunday, July 14, with 15 cast members.

The Seattle Shakespeare Company merged with Wooden O in 2008 and offers year-round indoor and outdoor performances. Wooden O is celebrating its 20th anniversary of classic outdoor performances this summer.

“The thing that I love most about Wooden O is that families can come. It’s a perfect picnic,” said Amy Thone, whose role in “The Tempest” is Prospero. “It’s very much a community builder. It’s accessible. It’s free. The theater is very good quality.”

For a full schedule of events and all locations, go to www.seattleshakespeare.org.

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