Spring into Summer with Shakespeare

All the library’s a stage!  April is the Bard’s birthday month, and the Brookline Public Library is celebrating with a host of presentations, interactive performances, and films.  The kickoff event, on April 2 at 1 PM, is an interactive show in the Brookline Village Library by the Knighthorse Theatre Company—with plays suggested by the audience and roles for the entire family.  Subsequent events include scenes from Julius Caesar offered by the Commonwealth Shakespeare Company (April 25), the Boston Theater Company Teen Touring Troupe’s interpretation of Much Ado about Nothing (May 7) and, later in the spring and summer, several films and two Commonwealth Shakespeare Company performances held on the Brookline Village library lawn! Please follow the links for further details.  All events are free and open to the public, and are supported by the Staff Programming Committee and the Trustees of the Brookline Library.

Unless otherwise noted, all events are at our Brookline Village location at 361 Washington Street.

Shakespeare on Demand with the Knighthorse Theatre Company

Sunday April 2, 1:00pm

Knighthorse specializes in creating original adaptions of Shakespeare: one or two actors on a bare stage with simple costumes and few props – playing ALL the parts. We take Shakespeare’s 400 year-old text and massage it to create something new. While his words and characters remain essentially unchanged, in our very capable and respectful hands, his plays get a mini-makeover in order to facilitate this minimalistic and highly imaginative delivery.

Scenes from Julius Caesar

Tuesday April 25, 6:30pm

Rome’s most powerful citizens plot the assassination of its ruler, Julius Caesar, to save the republic from an impending monarchy. In the wake of their bloody deed, the city must confront the consequences of their political idealism. When the curtains of rhetoric and symbolism are pulled aside, what underlying motivations will be un-masked? Honor? Greed? Patriotism? Ambition? In light of the recent presidential election cycle, JULIUS CAESAR offers a timely perspective on the rhetoric of political leaders and its scrutiny by the citizens they govern.

This event is a preview of the full production of Julius Caesar presented on Saturday, May 13 at Babson College.  These productions use Shakespeare’s original text and are performed by our CSC2 Company, a group of young professional actors in residency with us for the year. These productions bring the vibrancy, clarity and immediacy that has been the hallmark of our work on the Boston Common for over twenty years.

Much Ado About Nothing

Sunday May 7, 2:00pm

Boston Theater Company’s Teen Touring Troupe presents Much Ado About Nothing

Join our troupe of teenage actors for an hour-long adaptation of Shakespeare’s comedic romp, Much Ado About Nothing, set at prestigious boarding school Messina Prep. This story features healthy doses of gossip, cruel plots, first love, back-stabbing, name calling, visits to the principal, all-star athletes, a high school dance, and, yes, hall-monitors. See this classic brought to life in a whole new, modern, and hilarious way!

All are welcome!

Boston Theater Company’s Teen Touring Troupe is an exciting opportunity for young, committed actors in grades 7-12 to sharpen their performance skills, gain professional touring experience, and grow in a supportive ensemble. Actors work intensively with director/teaching-artist Sophie Rich on the performance of a Shakespeare play, and also have the opportunity to learn from other Boston-area professionals in master classes. Throughout our process, we focus on creating and sustaining a nuanced character, analyzing text, activating the body and the voice, and collaborating as a team both on- and off-stage.  Their tour of Much Ado About Nothing shows how all of that work pays off in a charming, engaging performance.

Midday Movies and Movie Matinee feature Shakespeare

Midday Movies: Much Ado About Nothing

Wednesday, June 7, 1:30 PM | Putterham Library

Joss Whedon wrote the adaptation as well as produced and directed this film, which was well received upon release.

Movie Matinee: Kiss Me Kate

Thursday, June 8, 1 PM | Coolidge Corner Library

The tumultuous relationship between theater stars Fred and Lily closely resembles that of the characters they play—Petruchio and Katharina—in The Taming Of The Shrew.

Two Plays from the Commonwealth Shakespeare Company

Thursday, July 27, and Friday, July 28, 6:30 PM

Details on these two full performances coming soon.