This summer, Smith Street Stage is putting a modern twist on the timeless tragedy, Julius Caesar. The production will still contain all the skillful stage combat, and political betrayal that those familiar with the play know and love, but there will be a few curveballs thrown in, making this production the perfect combination of classic Shakespeare and innovation.
The fourth annual installment of the Shakespeare in Carroll Park, aiming to be set in modern times, will feature live, original music, and sleek contemporary dress, and utilize the surrounding park as a natural stage setting.
“Shakespeare in the park is a New York tradition. There’s something about Shakespeare outside that makes it resonate in a way it doesn’t indoors,” said James Larson, who will be playing Cassius.
Directors Jonathan Hopkins and Jessica Weiss went into auditions with open minds, and took a risk by casting Sarah Dacey Charles, a female, as Julius Caesar. “It wasn’t something we were thinking at first, but we are doing it in modern day. Why can’t any of these roles be played be women?” said Artistic Director Beth Ann Hopkins.
“Primarily, I hope [viewers] take away that this story, like many of Shakespeare’s plays, is a story of people and relationships. The things that are relevant then are still relevant today,” said Weiss.
Performances are June 28-July 2, July 5-7, and July 11-14 at 7 p.m. Audience members should bring their own seating, and admission is free. Performances will be in front of the Robert Acito Park House in Carroll Park, Brooklyn.