A modern take on world-beating theatre comes to one of York’s best hidden gardens this summer.
York Shakespeare Project are bringing their popular Sonnets at the Bar back to the secret garden at The Bar Covent.
The Living Heritage Centre on Blossom Street will once again be the setting for a performance of Shakespeare’s sonnets – in a show that features a series of larger than life modern characters, who all have a secret to reveal through a sonnet from the bard.
Sonnets at the Bar is at The Bar Convent from Friday 11 to Saturday 19 August 2023.
“It’s a simple device that always seems to work,” explained Tony Froud, this year’s director. “Very often the actor can be halfway through the sonnet before the audience realises that the language has become Shakespearean.”
York Shakespeare Project first brought Shakespeare’s sonnets to life in 2014 with the Sonnet Walks, in which a group of audience members encountered colourful characters as they walked round the streets of York.
Though people remember the Walks fondly, show writer Helen Wilson said “staging the show in a single setting has great advantages” such as “allowing characters to meet, exchange conversations and reappear.”
Helen created the original Sonnet Walks, along with Maurice Crichton.
Sonnets at the Bar runs from 11 to 19 August. Tickets include a complimentary drink, and start from £5. Tickets are available via the York Theatre Royal website or from the York Theatre Royal Box Office (01904 623568).
“Sit back and enjoy a taste of Shakespeare that is both entertaining and accessible,” said Tony.
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