Royal Oak Presents Shakespeare Festival Featuring HAMLET & Other Classics, 7/31 - 8/10

Royal Oak Presents Shakespeare Festival Featuring HAMLET & Other Classics, 7/31 - 8/10

Final preparations are under way in Royal Oak's Starr Jaycee Park for the 14th annual outdoor summer theatre festival, Shakespeare Royal Oak. The festival begins July 28 and continues through Sunday, August 10. Tickets ($10-$20) are on sale now for Hamlet and The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (Abridged) [Revised] and can be purchased online at A complete Shakespeare Royal Oak performance schedule follows this release. In addition to its outdoor productions, Water Works will also offer performance minded students an opportunity to learn from working theatre professionals with the Water Works Academy and KidsAct! July 28 - August 9.


This year, Water Works founder Ed Nahhat realizes a personal dream to direct Shakespeare's greatest play, Hamlet, under the open sky, as it was first produced 400 years ago. "When we began the process of setting up the outdoor theatre for our first production - a process we go through from the ground up each summer - I knew the setting in Starr Jaycee Park was perfect for Hamlet," states Nahhat. "Now, 14 years later, we're able to put together a remarkable cast that will bring Shakespeare's most incredible play to life." Water Works' Hamlet will remain loyal to the Bard's genius and the Dane's perfect soliloquies, with a cast of Michigan's finest actors and designers bringing this thrilling clash of deadly swords and even sharper wit to Starr Jaycee Park. The original underdog, Prince Hamlet faces down real ghosts and his own demons to make things right in his kingdom. Hamlet will play at 8:00 pm Thursday, Friday, and Saturday night and at 5:00 pm on Sundays July 31 - August 10. Tickets ($20) are on sale now online at

The Complete Works Of William Shakespeare (Abridged) [Revised]

For its 5th annual Daylight Show, Water Works Theatre Company will present The Complete Works Of William Shakespeare (Abridged) [Revised] by Adam Long, Daniel Singer and Jess Winfield August 2-10 in Starr Jaycee Park. See all of the Bard's genius mashed together into one hilarious farce presented by three incredible local actors. Directed by Water Works Artistic Director Sarah Catheryn Wolf, Complete Works is sure to leave audiences laughing all the way home! This daylight show is appropriate for ages 10 & older and will run just over 90 minutes at 2:00 pm Saturday and Sunday August 2,3,9 and 10, and 7:00 pm on Tuesday, August 5 and Wednesday, August 6. Tickets ($10) are on sale now online at

Shakespeare Royal Oak outdoor youth educational programs

For the 13th year, Water Works Theatre Company will offer performance minded students a chance to learn from experts and to perform on the outdoor stage in Starr Jaycee Park July 28 - August 9.

Water Works Academy is a one-week intensive for high school and pre-college students that gives young actors the chance to create their own play in the park using a "summer stock" company approach. Working professionals guide students as they embark on the adventure of writing, directing, stage managing, designing and performing a one-of-a-kind piece of theatrical magic on the Shakespeare stage in Starr Jaycee Park. Water Works Academy classes are July 28 - August 2, tuition is $200 per student. A few spots remain available online at or by emailing Last minute registration may also be available in the park on Monday July 28.

KidsAct! is a one week educational experience for students entering grades 1-8. Water Works' professional staff will encourage students' natural confidence and inspire their creative expression. Students love the open park setting and revel in discovering the basics of Shakespeare, safe stage combat, dance, improv and scene work. Tuition is $200 per student with a few spots still available online at emailing

Water Works Academy and KidsAct! will conclude with a FREE all ages show. The Water Works Academy show will occur on August 2 at 10:00 am. The KidsAct! show will take place on August 8 at 10:00 am. Both will take place on the Shakespeare Royal Oak stage in Starr Jaycee Park and are FREE for all ages and open to the public.

Shakespeare Royal Oak

For two weeks this summer, Starr Jaycee Park, a 28-acre public park with play structures, a disk golf course, mini-train tracks, ball diamonds and lots of old growth trees, will also be home to a barrier-free, open-air theatre custom built by Water Works Theatre Company.

Seating in the Starr Jaycee Park outdoor theatre is first come, first served with an area for blankets on the lawn close to the stage. Low-to-the-ground lawn chairs are placed behind blankets followed by tall lawn chairs toward the back of the lawn area. Bleacher seating is available along the perimeter of the lawn and accessible seating is available throughout the outdoor theatre.

Guests cannot bring their own, but Water Works Theatre Company will have beer, wine and coffee for sale during performances of Hamlet for guests with proper I.D. The company is proudly serving beer from Royal Oak brewery Milking It Productions and wine & coffee from local distributor Five O'Clock Brands. Non-alcoholic beverages with snacks and concessions are available at all Shakespeare Royal Oak performances.

Convenient parking is available at or adjacent to Starr Jaycee Park.

Shakespeare Royal Oak performance schedule

All performances take place in Starr Jaycee Park, 1301 West 13 Mile Road, Royal Oak MI 48073


Tickets: $20

Thursday, July 31 @ 8:00pm

Friday, August 1 @ 8:00pm

Saturday, August 2 @ 8:00pm

Sunday, August 3 @ 5:00pm

Thursday, August 7 @ 8:00pm

Friday, August 8 @ 8:00pm

Saturday, August 9 @ 8:00pm

Sunday, August 10 @ 5:00pm

The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (Abridged) [Revised]

Tickets: $10

Saturday, August 2 @ 2:00pm

Sunday, August 3 @ 2:00pm

Tuesday, August 5 @ 7:00pm

Wednesday, August 6 @ 7:00pm

Saturday, August 9 @ 2:00pm

Sunday, August 10 @ 2:00pm

Since 2001 Water Works Theatre Company has presented Shakespeare Royal Oak and other award-winning productions. Water Works enhances the quality of life in the community by offering Michigan's only outdoor professional Shakespeare event in Royal Oak's Starr Jaycee Park. Water Works' mission is to provide a place to call home for local professional actors, designers, directors, teachers, and other artists in a dynamic collaboration with skilled professional volunteers and other community supporters. Learn more at:

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