Hip to Hip Theatre Company Announces Summer Productions for 2019 Season Tour of Free Shakespeare in the Parks @hiptohiptheatre

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Hip to Hip Theatre Company Announces Summer Productions for 2019 Season Tour of Free Shakespeare in the Parks

A Midsummer Night’s Dream and Richard III

Running in Repertory July 24th – August 25th in Parks in all Five Boroughs as well as New Jersey and Long Island

Hip to Hip Theatre Company is pleased to announce that they will showcase two of Shakespeare’s classic plays during their 2019 Free Shakespeare in the Parks summer tour. Audiences will have a chance to enjoy the romantic comedy, A Midsummer Night’s Dream (directed by S.C. Lucier), and the historic tragedy Richard III (directed by David Mold), under the stars. Their season will culminate with an indoor winter production of Troilus and Cressida (directed by Jason Marr).

The two productions will perform in rotating repertory from July 24 to August 25, at fourteen parks throughout Manhattan, Queens, Brooklyn, Staten Island, and the Bronx. Performances will also take place in Jersey City and Southampton. Hip to Hip’s popular children’s workshop “Kids & the Classics,” will be offered thirty minutes before each performance. 

Audience members are encouraged to bring a blanket or low chair, picnic fare and enjoy a Shakespeare play in the open air. No tickets are necessary. Tour schedule will be announced in mid-June. 

Artistic Director Jason Marr, discussed this season’s play selection, “If you’re going to produce something as dark and bloody as Richard III, you need something as light and fluffy as A Midsummer Night’s Dream to balance the season.”

Marr went on to share, “Both as a producer and as an actor, Richard III has hovered near the top of my “yet-to-do list” for years. It’s never made the cut, because on some level the play doesn’t quite sing for me. After thirteen years with Hip to Hip, and with my “yet-to-do list” getting shorter and shorter, it seemed time to take another look at Richard III.” He went on to say, “I came across the fascinating documentary, “The King in the Car Park,” which tracks the exhumation and reburial of the remains of Richard III, which culminated in 2012.  With the discovery of Richard III’s remains, we now know that Shakespeare’s portrait of Richard’s deformity is grossly exaggerated. The exhumed skeleton reveals Richard had severe scoliosis, but it bears no suggestion that he was a hunchback with a withered arm and unequally sized legs. Hip to Hip’s new radical adaptation of Richard III attempts to bridge the divide between the real man and the caricature the Tudors, aided and abetted by Shakespeare, perpetuated.”

The repertory cast includes Leah Alfieri, Kendall Devin Bell, Katie Fanning*, Rebecca Wei Hsieh, Kurt Kingsley*, Tristan Land, Jason Marr*, Joy Marr*, Josh Miccio, Austin Nguyen, Anuj Parikh, Sophia Parola and Colin Wulff*.
*appears courtesy of Actors Equity Association

A Midsummer Night’s Dream
Four young lovers escape the tyranny of the court to find love in a magical forest. On the same night and in the same forest, the king and queen of the fairies declare war on each other and a company of amateur actors meet to rehearse a play. See what happens when a mischievous sprite called Puck weaves their three stories into one.

Richard III
After a long civil war, England enjoys a period of peace under King Edward. But Edward’s younger brother Richard, who helped him to the throne, grows restless in the shadows. Shakespeare’s searing drama chronicles the bloody rise and fall of the last English king to die on the battlefield.

Troilus and Cressida
Seven years into the Trojan War, would-be lovers Troilus and Cressida pine for each other, encouraged by the hilarious Pandarus. Meanwhile, Paris, Hector and Achilles fight over the fate of Helen of Troy. A rare opportunity to see Shakespeare’s funny, insightful and cynical take on the heroes of the Iliad.

Kids & the Classics
“Kids & the Classics” is the companion piece to Hip to Hip’s program of “Free Shakespeare in the Parks.” This free interactive workshop is offered 30 minutes before every performance, and is designed for children ages 4 to 12. It gives children a chance to interact with the text by previewing the characters and situations and creating links between the text and their own lives.

About Hip to Hip Theatre Company

Hip to Hip, now in its 13th year, is dedicated to stimulating and developing interest in the theatre arts in underserved communities by providing free, family-friendly, professional productions of popular classics, and free theatre workshops for children, in public spaces. 




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Non Disposable Theatre: Shakespeare on Wine

“The wine-cup is the little silver well,
Where truth, if truth there be, doth dwell.”

Non Disposable Productions and HITFest 

in association with Theatre Beyond Broadway and HOOK


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Directed by Lupe Gehrenbeck

Derek Straat, Ian McDonald, Lauren Salvo, Randy Howk, Gina Stec, Rock Kohli, Joe McCarthy, Tina Kobas, Brent White, Liana Jackson

Music by Guiseppe Zep

Production Stage Manager: Stephanie Andersen


Shakespeare cultivated ideas brilliantly about many subjects. “Shakespeare on Wine” harvests his language about wine, love and truth – all bottled into an effervescent sixty minutes to delight your theatrical palate. Come and celebrate the wine and words while supporting the East Hampton Historical Society.

HITFest is thrilled to team up with these professional New York City actors to entertain you, support our community, and foster the development of high quality theatre on the East End.

Shakespeare on Wine will donate a percentage of the proceeds to the East Hampton Historical Society, which commits to maintaining the structural integrity of the Mulford Farm Osborn-Jackson House, Clinton Academy, East Hampton Town Museum, Town House and Hook Schoolhouse (structures built in the 17th and 18th centuries).

TIME:  Saturday, May 16th; Doors Open at 7pm, Show begins at 8pm

LOCATION: The Bridgehampton Community House at 2357 Montauk Highway, Bridgehampton, NY

TICKETS: $20.00

Click HERE for reservations.

Auditions and Other Life Lessons!

We held auditions for Twelfth Night last weekend and I am always astounded at the level of talent that exists. The best auditions were done by actors who chose monologues that most spoke to them. I have written and given advice on auditioning many times but this time I had a true aha moment. I realized that in addition to having a good headshot and a professional resume,  it is also important to prepare a monologue that speaks to you. At the end of the day, the audition process should not solely be about getting the part but also about doing your best.

One of the many lessons I learned in school and continue to apply is asking myself  have I done my best. Not only in acting or directing or producing, but in just about everything I do. If I know that I have done my best then I am mentally prepared for whatever follows. I also try to find the lesson. There is always something to gain from an experience. The moment I started doing that I find that I don’t get as crazy if things don’t go my way. That’s a big deal for me because I want everything to go my way,

So getting back to the audition process, here are my observations from last week’s auditions from the other side of the table:

  • The most interesting monologues were the most natural ones. We can see the passion in the your eyes and body if the monologue brings that for you.
  • If you are comfortable and in love with the monologue, it is easy for you to take direction and apply it when asked to do so.
  • It says a whole lot if you ask if we have a preference of monologue as it shows you are versatile and prepared. 

Here are my additional thoughts on the audition process as a whole. I have always said that you never know what goes on in a director’s head. I think it’s important to keep this in mind:

  • Don’t take it personal
  • Don’t think about the competition
  • Do your best work

And here is the information for Twelfth Night:

After a sudden summer squall, twin campers wind up on the wrong side of the lake and find themselves at Camp Illyria! After getting separated in the storm, Viola and Sebastian must contend with lovestruck Administrators and Athletic Coaches, vivacious Accountants, Kitchen Staff that has to be seen to be believed, and the surliest “Camp Cheer Counselor” they could possibly imagine, all the while trying to meet back up with each other, and get back to where they came from! Their twisted and madcap journey of fun and discovery takes place this summer in:

Brooklyn at McCarren Park on July 14th & The Waterfron on July 16th
Queens at the Forest Park Bandshell on July 15th
Manhattan at Cherry Hill in Central Park on July 20th and 21st
The Bronx in Van Cortlandt Park on July 22nd