Pulse Ensemble Theatre Begins 5th Season Of Harlem Summer Shakespeare With MIDSUMMER NIGHT'S DREAM 8/6

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The critically acclaimed PULSE ENSEMBLE THEATRE, now celebrating its 20th season, will present its 5th season of HARLEM SUMMER SHAKESPEARE with free performances of Shakespeare's "A MIDSUMMER NIGHT'S DREAM" beginning on August 6th, 2009. The company will perform in various venues all over Harlem during the month of August.

In the past, Harlem Summer Shakespeare has been presented in the amphitheatre of Riverbank State Park overlooking the Hudson River. However, as the amphitheatre is under repair this summer, Pulse Ensemble Theatre will move to several new locations in upper Manhattan.

On August 6th at 6 PM and August 8 at 2 PM, The company will perform at the Countee Cullen LIBRARY Auditorium, 104 W 136th Street.

On August 13th and 14th at 7 PM they will appear at St. Nicholas Park, 135TH Street & Nicholas Avenue.

At 7 PM on August 18th and 19th The company will perform at Morningside Park, 112th Street and Morningside Drive, and on August 21 and 22 at 7 PM they will return to Riverbank State Park, 145th & Riverside Drive, performing on the Mainstage in the upper area. On Thursday, August 27 and Friday, August, 28 at 8 PM they will perform at TEMPLE "M", 555 West 141st Street and on August 29 and 30 at 2 PM they will appear on GOVERNORS ISLAND, a 7 minute Ferry Ride from South Ferry.

To accommodate all the different venues the sets will be minimal this year, and the show will utilize the physical aspects of the various performances spaces. Audiences are encouraged to bring blankets and chairs to the outdoor performances.

Artistic Director Alexa Kelly said: "Continuing our tradition of making Shakespeare a part of today's world, this show will be visually contemporary, whilst Shakespeare's language is kept intact. The goal of the Harlem Summer Shakespeare is to bring Shakespeare to new audiences. Following the tradition of the great Joe Papp, we bring live, multi-ethnic theatre, FREE, to families and young people who might not gravitate to or think that they would enjoy live theatre-especially not Shakespeare. We use familiar, contemporary visuals, motifs and sounds, to bring the audience closer to the story being told on stage. In A MIDSUMMER NIGHT'S DREAM, now set in New York City's Central Park, the young folk will be denizens of the upper east side, the mechanicals will be homeless people, and the Magical creatures will be part dog, part bird, and just for fun's sake, a hint of lion, with Titania's Fairies being more reminiscent of ‘Cat Women' than Tinkerbell."

The company's first four seasons included popular and critically acclaimed productions of TWELFTH NIGHT, THE TEMPEST, A MIDSUMMER NIGHT'S DREAM and ROMEO AND JULIET where Lord and Lady Capulet danced to Marvin Gaye and Romeo first spied Juliet as she danced to The Black Eyed Peas. The New York Times said of The company's 2005 production of "A Midsummer Night's Dream": "The audience - which did not resemble any audience I have seen at the Delacorte or any other mainstream Shakespeare venue-obviously loved it!" The 2007 production of THE TEMPEST, where Izod shirts replaced Elizabethan ruffs, continued The company's tradition of making Shakespeare immediate and accessible to audiences new to Shakespeare as well as to those familiar with the Bard.

A MIDSUMMER NIGHT'S DREAM, directed by Alexa Kelly, will feature FrEddie Bennett (Puck), Laura Carbonell (Helena), BrIan Richardson (Oberon), Alvin Chan (Lysander), Bernardo Cubria (Demetrius), Mick D'arcy (Quince), Lolita Foster (Hermia), Maria Hurdle (Titania), Ryan F. Johnson (STARVELING), Shaun Rice (Bottom), Warren Katz (Aegeus), Cara Maltz (Hippolyta), Ras Enoch McCurdie (Snout), Sean McIntire (Theseus), Burt Grinstead (Flute) and Erica Swindell, Chivonne Michelle Floyd and Melanie Gretchen as Fairies.

Costume design is by Kristine Koury with lighting by Steve O'Shea and sound design by BrIan Richardson.

For additional information, go to www.pulseensembletheatre.org or call (212) 695-1596.


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