Four plays, along with several special events, will be staged at Vanier Park from June 6 to Sept. 22.
This year’s productions are main-stage showings of Macbeth and As You Like It, along with smaller-stage tellings of Timon of Athens and Lysistrata.
The festival’s version of As You Like It is set in 1960s Vancouver, “and free spirits are escaping from Vancouver to get ‘back to the land,’” according to a description of the play on the festival website. “This joyful tribute to love, laughter and music features 20 classic Beatles songs, from ‘I Want to Hold Your Hand’ to ‘All You Need is Love,’ performed by the cast.”
Timon of Athens is billed as “a provocative study of greed and false friends, directed by Meg Roe,” while Lysistrata’s script focuses on the first-ever women’s strike, in the hands of director Lois Anderson.
Related special events this season include Bard-B-Q & Fireworks, Family Nights, Talkback Tuesdays, Wine Wednesdays and the Exploring Shakespeare Talks (one for each of the four plays).
Also, musical performances return to the BMO Mainstage, including Chor Leoni: Mane Event as well as Opera & Arias: Bold and Beautiful with the UBC Opera Ensemble and Vancouver Opera Orchestra.
Ticket prices for all regular play performances start at $24 via bardonthebeach.org and 604-739-0559.
Bard on the Beach is one of Canada’s largest not-for-profit, professional Shakespeare festivals. Established in 1990, the annual summer festival’s mission is “to perform, explore and celebrate the genius of William Shakespeare” on a stage surrounded by the natural beauty of Vancouver.