Schroon Lake is harboring a gem. But this year, due to insufficient funding, that gem is appearing in the rough. The Adirondack Shakespeare Company, based in Schroon Lake, could not afford a main stage production of Shakespeare this season but that has not stopped them from producing a superb staged reading of the bard’s popular comedy, “Much Ado About Nothing.”
The production is at the Boathouse Theatre in Schroon Lake this lovely Saturday evening and though it is a staged reading, when done well the scripts seem to disappear completely--and this evening’s performance is very well done.
Artistic Director, Tara Bradway says that, “the lifeblood and soul of this company is Shakespeare” and that certainly comes across in tonight’s energetic performance.
However, the funding for the summer production has gone into the children’s programming and the troupe will be performing a full-stage production of Celtic Fairy Tales at locations throughout the North Country including at the Lake Placid Center for the Arts on July 31 at 10:30 AM. According to Tara, the company believes in raising the tone of children’s theatre and enjoys sharing great messages told in an eloquent style.
Tara, who also adeptly plays multiple roles in tonight’s reading of “Much Ado,” explains that she is a little disappointed that the company cannot afford main stage Shakespeare this summer. She says, “it means that we need to work even harder to fund and support that work. The Shakespeare performances are the artistic bread and butter of the company, and without it even the children’s programming will not continue.” Though they enjoy producing high-quality children’s theater, Bradway says, “…in the end we’re not a children’s theatre company. We’re a classical repertory company who also happens to produce great theatre for kids.”
She has great enthusiasm for the extended company season this fall when Adirondack Shakespeare Company will be touring Shakespeare’s “Love’s Labour’s Lost,” to several venues around the park. The performances will take place in the week leading up to Columbus Day. They will be featured at the Upper Jay Arts Center in Upper Jay and the Whallonsburg Grange Hall in Whallonsburg.
Based on the performances this evening, you should make every effort to attend if you find yourself anywhere near one of the venues hosting the Adirondack Shakespeare Company this fall.
For more information on upcoming performances click through to the Adirondack Shakespeare Company’s web site, or check out the calendar at Upper Jay Arts Center and Whallonsburg Grange Hall.
Kathleen Recchia has been enjoying the arts in the Adirondacks for about 20 years—both as observer and participant (acting, directing, and producing). She also enjoys cross-country skiing, swimming, juggling, and hosting visitors to the area at her bed & breakfast in Jay.