It’s in Queens
#OngoingFun | Free Shakespeare in Queens parks!
They’re back! And this time they’re bringing epic battles, political sex scandals, and plenty of zany characters.
Hip to Hip Theatre Company will present family-friendly versions of two Shakespeare plays — Henry IV: Part 1: The Prince and the Rebel and Measure for Measure – throughout Queens (and in NYC’s other four boroughs, Jersey City, and Southampton) over four weeks this summer. The Woodside-based troupe, which is now in its eleventh year, will also offer interactive workshops for children, starting 30 minutes before each performance.
The free fun begins with Henry IV in Sunnyside Gardens Park on Tuesday, July 25, at 7 pm. Click here for the full calendar, but a list of the other Queens performances follows.
- July 26, Measure for Measure, the Unisphere, Flushing Meadows Corona Park, 7 pm;
- July 27, Henry IV, Crocheron Park, Bayside, 7 pm;
- Aug. 3, Measure for Measure, Crocheron Park, Bayside, 7 pm;
- Aug. 4, Measure for Measure, Voelker Orth Museum, Flushing, 7 pm;
- Aug. 5, Measure for Measure, Gantry Plaza State Park, LIC, 7 pm;
- Aug. 6, Henry IV, Socrates Sculpture Park, LIC, 4:30 pm;
- Aug. 10, Measure for Measure, Cunningham Park, Fresh Meadows, 7:30 pm;
- Aug. 11, Henry IV, Voelker Orth Museum, Flushing, 7 pm;
- Aug. 12, Henry IV, Gantry Plaza State Park, LIC, 7 pm;
- Aug. 13, Measure for Measure, Socrates Sculpture Park, LIC, 4:30 pm;
- Aug. 15, Measure for Measure, Sunnyside Gardens Park, 7 pm; and
- Aug. 17, Henry IV, Cunningham Park, Fresh Meadows, 7:30 pm.
Henry IV is an action-packed, coming-of-age tale the mixes history with comedy. In 15th century England, Prince Hal is a wild child caught between two worlds. The future King Henry V likes to carouse with criminals and commoners in bucket-of-blood bars. His buddy, the fat and corrupt Falstaff, leads the way to this low life.
Meanwhile, the prince’s father, King Henry IV (the play’s namesake), pains for him to mature as he is heir to the throne. Eventually, the lad transforms from a bar brawler into a brave warrior who heroically slays the rebel leader, Hotspur, in an uprising. He’s then considered a noble commander. The play explores the complicated question: “What makes a good leader?”
Measure for Measure, which Shakespeare wrote a few years after Henry IV, is a dark comedy based on a real event that explores abuse of power and Christian values. It’s the 15th century, and the Duke of Vienna tasks his seemingly puritanical deputy, Angelo, to clean up the fallen, mammon-soaked Italian city.
On a clear power trip, Angelo unjustly sentences a young gentleman, Claudio, to death. However, Claudio’s sister, a nun named “Isabella,” fights to save her brother and discovers that Angelo is not as virtuous as he seems. Double-tricks, bad deals, and broken promises ensue.
Please note that the Cunningham Park stage will be in the vicinity of Union Turnpike and 196th Street. The Crocheron Park stage will be in the vicinity of 35th Avenue and Corbett Road.
#newsflash #shakespeare #hiptohip #itsinqueens
Images: Hip to Hip Theatre Company