Westfield’s Troupe of Friends to Bring Shakespeare’s King Lear to Mindowaskin Park Labor Day Weekend
Tuesday, August 20, 2013 • 7:06pm
WESTFIELD, NJ—If you’ve had your fill of parkway traffic and crowded beaches, spend summer’s last hurrah with Westfield’s Troupe of Friends. The acting group will bring Shakespeare’s King Lear to Mindowaskin Park this Labor Day weekend. And, unlike beach badges, performances are free of charge.
A classic “game of thrones,” Lear follows a domino effect of betrayals resulting in a king’s rocky descent from sovereignty. And, despite the production’s sword fights and lost eyeballs, Artistic Director Joe Penczak said he has attempted to play up the show’s comedic moments for a heightened dramatic experience.
“Tragedy is implicit in the plot,” said Penczak. “I try to find the humor of the light moments in the tragedy. It makes it more profound when sad things inevitably happen.”
But it is the show’s tragic genre that, in addition to the quality of its actors, makes the production worth a weekend in Westfield, assured Penczak.
“Most [community theater] companies put on comedies,” said the director. “It’s very rare that you see tragedies done in outdoor summer theater.”
Performances will take place at the bandstand at 7:30 p.m. on August 30 and 31 and at 2 p.m. on September 1. Blankets or lawn chairs and bug spray are recommended.
In case of rain, performances will be held in the community room at in the municipal building, 425 East Broad Street.