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Independent Shakespeare Co. Presents The Griffith Park Free Shakespeare Festival 2020 Living Room Edition

Independent Shakespeare Co. Presents The Griffith Park Free Shakespeare Festival 2020 Living Room Edition

Independent Shakespeare Co. (ISC) is venturing into the digital space with the Griffith Park Free Shakespeare Festival - Living Room Edition, launching a series of four Festival Events live streaming in August, culminating in a brand new, hybrid stage production of Romeo & Juliet live streaming Labor Day weekend. All events will be available free and online.

Festival Events will live stream Saturdays in August at 7pm. These original programs will feature in-depth Salon discussions, music, special guests and will kickoff with a retrospective of ten years of Shakespeare in Griffith Park. An all-new live, interactive production of Romeo & Juliet will live stream for four performances Thursday, September 3 - Sunday, September 6 at 7pm. The presentations will then be made available on ISC's website through September 16.

Artistic Director Melissa Chalsma comments, "Creativity is the engine of the impossible. We are in a time of crisis, and it is demanding of us solutions that are unparalleled in their creativity: we are being called upon to imagine an entirely new future. Theater has always been a place audiences and artists can manifest the impossible, and although we can't be in the same physical location, we must still come together and imagine what our community is becoming. The tangible sense of connection theater has always provided is now more important than ever before."

Managing Director David Melville adds, "Whereas I can't pretend I wouldn't rather be rehearsing and performing live Shakespeare for thousands of Angelenos this summer, the challenge to create something new has been quite exciting. I have been inspired by how our actors and creative teams have been experimenting with new ways to bring Shakespeare to life on screen. For our online fundraiser in the May, Melissa Chalsma and Nikhil Pai (ISC Ensemble Member) put together a 5-minute short based on the balcony scene from Romeo & Juliet only using social media, iPhone texts, and music to tell the story. It was one of those great "what if" moments that really paid off. Our presentation for the "at home" festival will build on this idea - utilizing Shakespeare's text, animation, social media, music, old fashioned movie-making and ISC's indoor stage in Atwater. We are looking forward to reconnecting with beloved ISC company members and we hope the audience will be happy to be reunited with them too - albeit via digital media."

Also moving into the digital realm is a slate of community engagement events including Players in the Park/Teatristas en el parque (PIP), family education workshops for learners of all ages. Civic engagement efforts will include voter registration and information about the 2020 Census.

All events and performances will be online and free to access. Visit or call (818) 710-6306 for information.

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