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Drama, comedy, and Broadway musicals under dark skies.
Photo: PR (Sand Harbor State Park)
Imagine using your hands to scoop a fanny-sized dent in the warm sandy beach at Sand Harbor State Park, settling back with a bucket of Kentucky Fried Chicken and a few beers, and cuddling under a blanket with your family while watching a Shakespeare play. The set design is mostly by Mother Nature—a beautiful sunset, tall pines, a gazillion stars, and the faint sound of waves lapping the beach at Lake Tahoe.
Rather than KFC, Tahoe playgoers have been known to bring out the candelabra to accompany their wine and cheese. Those not wanting to pack their food and drink can purchase dinner at Shakespeare’s Kitchen.
About 30,000 people are expected to watch this season’s three plays from July 10-August 17. “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” and “Richard III” are on a rotating schedule, while “CAMBIO,” an original non-Shakespeare production, is performed Mondays.
Carson City’s Summer Stock Theater features “Smokey Joe’s Café,” a musical, and the comedic farce “The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (abridged).” Outdoor performances are held at the Brewery Arts Center, Thursday through Sunday, July 24-August 10.
In Las Vegas, Super Summer Theatre, 13 miles west of the city via Charleston Boulevard, is performed on the expansive lawn of a historic ranch house. Before it became Spring Mountain Ranch State Park, horse thieves, a cutthroat or two, radio personality Chet Lauck, the “Lum” of Lum and Abner, and German actress Vera Krupp of THE Krupp diamond resided at the oasis.
The ranch is bounded by the sandstone beauty of the Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area and is, on average, about 10 degrees cooler than the Las Vegas Valley. Showgoers sprawl on blankets or set up chairs while picnicking before the show. Instead of the Bard, Super Summer Theatre offers musicals, which include “1776,” July 10-26, and “Elton John and Tim Rice’s AIDA,” August 14-30.
When Southern Nevada temperatures start to cool off, look for “Romeo and Juliet” at Henderson’s Shakespeare in the Park, October 3-5. I know I’ll be there to watch poor Romeo’s fate. You’d think after all these years he’d learn his lesson.
Lake Tahoe Shakespeare Festival
July 10-Aug. 17
BAC Summer Stock Theater
July 24-Aug. 10
Super Summer Theatre
“1776,” July 10-26
“Elton John and Tim Rice’s AIDA,”
Shakespeare in the Park
Shakespeare on the Lawn
Valhalla Estate, Lake Tahoe
“A Midsummer Night’s Dream,”
Children’s version free
WORTH A VISIT
Utah Shakespearean Festival
Cedar City, Utah
(63 miles from Nevada border)
Thru Oct. 25
Tony Award-winning company presents nine productions