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Summit Players Theatre Returns to Offer Free Shakespeare Play with Workshops in 24 State Parks 

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In accordance with the  company's mission of creating Shakespeare anyone can afford, attend, and understand.

Wisconsin-based traveling theatre company Summit Players Theatre is returning to live, outdoor performance after a year off due to COVID-19 and will be performing Shakespeare's The Winter's Tale from June 12 to August 22 in 24 different Wisconsin State Parks. All performances will be free and preceded by a 45-minute educational workshop.

"We're excited to get back to presenting live theatre and bringing people together across Wisconsin," stated Executive Director A.J. Magoon, a founding member of the organization. "The Winter's Tale is like Shakespeare's take on a fairy tale - there's love, there's loss, there's magic and music. The audience gets to help us reach that happily-ever-after ending, which is a perfect way to return this year."

Each The Winter's Tale show will be 75 minutes long and completely free, in accordance with the company's mission of creating Shakespeare anyone can afford, attend, and understand. Through a collaboration with the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, the Summit Players are also able to introduce audiences around the state to their local parks.

The group's educational workshop, "Inside Shakespeare's Story: The Winter's Tale" is new this year and offered before every show. It serves as a way for kids and "fun adults" to get comfortable with the play, Shakespeare's language and the way nature played into his works. Participants take part in Shakespeare games and exercises culminating in performing a short scene.

This year, the Summit Players team boasts three new members-Maura Atwood, Cole Conrad and Kaylene Howard. All three will act in The Winter's Tale as well as serving as teaching artists for the company.

"We're coming back with something totally new, which is perfect for people who love us or people who have never seen us," said Caroline Norton, Education Director and two-year alumna of the company's tours. "There are new things to learn in our workshop, new people to see in our show, new jokes, new lessons and new fun while still getting that classic Shakespeare in the State Parks experience.

Summit Players Theatre's 2021 season is supported in part by grants from the Wisconsin Arts Board and Wisconsin Humanities Council, with funds from the National Endowment for the Humanities. Any views, findings, conclusions or recommendations expressed in this project do not necessarily represent those of the National Endowment for the Humanities. The Wisconsin Humanities Council supports and creates programs that use history, culture, and discussion to strengthen community life for everyone in Wisconsin.

The Players' sixth season will consist of the following performances:

June 12: Richard Bong State Recreation Area Workshop: 5:30 p.m. | Show: 7:00 p.m. June 13: High Cliff State Park

Workshop: 1:00 p.m. | Show: 2:30 p.m. June 18: Three Bridges Park

Workshop: 5:30 p.m. | Show: 7:00 p.m. June 19: Copper Culture State Park Workshop: 5:30 p.m. | Show: 7:00 p.m. June 20: Hartman Creek State Park Workshop: 1:00 p.m. | Show: 2:30 p.m. June 25: Yellowstone Lake State Park Workshop: 5:30 p.m. | Show: 7:00 p.m. June 26: Wyalusing State Park

Workshop: 5:30 p.m. | Show: 7:00 p.m. June 27: Blue Mound State Park

Workshop: 1:00 p.m. | Show: 2:30 p.m. July 9: Copper Falls State Park

Workshop: 5:30 p.m. | Show: 7:00 p.m. July 10: Pattison State Park

Workshop: 5:30 p.m. | Show: 7:00 p.m. July 16: Havenwoods State Forest Workshop: 5:30 p.m. | Show: 7:00 p.m. July 17: Kohler-Andrae State Park Workshop: 5:30 p.m. | Show: 7:00 p.m. July 18: Peninsula State Park

Workshop: 1:00 p.m. | Show: 2:30 p.m.

July 23: Lake Kegonsa State Park

Workshop: 5:30 p.m. | Show: 7:00 p.m. July 24: Mirror Lake State Forest

Workshop: 5:30 p.m. | Show: 7:00 p.m. July 25: Roche-a-Cri State Park

Workshop: 1:00 p.m. | Show: 2:30 p.m. August 6: Governor Knowles State Forest Workshop: 5:30 p.m. | Show: 7:00 p.m. August 7: Interstate State Park

Workshop: 5:30 p.m. | Show: 7:00 p.m. August 9: Havenwoods State Forest

Workshop: 5:30 p.m. | Show: 7:00 p.m. August 13: Kettle Moraine State Forest - Pike Lake Unit Workshop: 5:30 p.m. | Show: 7:00 p.m. August 14: Wildcat Mountain State Park Workshop: 5:30 p.m. | Show: 7:00 p.m. August 15: Perrot State Park

Workshop: 1:00 p.m. | Show: 2:30 p.m. August 20: Rib Mountain State Park

Workshop: 5:30 p.m. | Show: 7:00 p.m. August 21: Flambeau River State Forest Workshop: 5:30 p.m. | Show: 7:00 p.m. August 22: Lake Wissota State Park

Workshop: 1:00 p.m. | Show: 2:30 p.m.


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