Shakespeare and Dickens comes to Highgate open air theatres for summer
- Credit: Nigel Sutton
Theatre buffs will be reaching for the Prosecco and picnic blankets as open-air theatre comes to Highgate this summer. For a child-friendly dose of Shakespeare, Theatre on the Tea Lawn returns to Lauderdale House, in Highgate Hill, with a modern interpretation of Romeo and Juliet.
The Shooting Stars Theatre Company, who have previously performed in car parks with the audience sitting on hay bales and last year staged A Midsummer Night’s Dream at the Highgate venue, will brave the elements to enact the tragedy of the star-crossed lovers.
Muswell Hill-based director Helen Crosse says: “We strip everything right back.
“There are no big, fancy costumes, we just have the characters in hoodies and jeans and we cut out some of the airy fairy speech.”
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“We always interact with the audience too – we might even have one of the actors steal a cheeky glass of wine from them!”
If that doesn’t satisfy theatrical tastebuds, Theatre in the Square stages Charles Dickens’s classic novel Great Expectations at the United Reformed Church in Pond Square. Robert Alderman, who adapted the story for the stage, said: “It’s the eternal story of a young man making his way in the world, overcoming the hurdles that life throws at him and coming to maturity as a wiser person. We hope the audiences in London will enjoy Great Expectations as much as we do.”
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Set in London and the Kent marshes, it begins with the terrifying encounter between Pip and escaped convict Magwitch and follows his journey of bitterness and revenge, ambition, betrayal and fights to the death.
Romeo and Juliet runs from July 29 to August 8. Visit lauderdalehouse.org.uk for more information. Great Expectations runs from July 23 to 26 at Highgate United Reformed Church in Pond Square. Tickets are £10, available at theatreinthesquare.org.