So Friday morning I’m watching last night’s ‘Colbert Report’ and The Wife comes in and she says,
“Guess what we’re doing tonight?”
“No no no no no no no no no no no. No no no no. We’re not doing anything other than what we usually do — watch the ‘PBS Newshour’ followed by ‘Washington Week in Review.’ I think my old buddy Major Garrett is supposed to be on tonight.”
“That’s right, we’re going to Shakespeare in the Park.”
“What? Wait. What? No. We just did that last Friday.”
“Yes, but this is new.”
“There’s no new Shakespeare. There hasn’t been any new Shakespeare in 600 years.”
“Last Friday we went to the St. Louis Shakespeare in the Park. Tonight we’re going to the St. Charles Shakespeare in the Park.”
“How many Shakespeare in the Parks are there?”
“Just those two that I know of. There might be more, there are lots of parks in the St. Louis area. Do you want me to look into it?”
“No, no. Two is aplenty. *sigh* What play are the St. Charles people doing?”
“Much Ado About Nothing.”
“Oh. I kinda like that one. At least I kinda understand it. That’s the one with Kenneth Branagh and Emma Thompson, right?”
“He directed ‘Thor,’ you know.”
“Good for him.”
“Wouldn’t you rather go see ‘Thor?'”
“No. Stevie and Melfy are coming along, if that makes it better.”
“Why would Stevie and Melfy want to come?”
“Some people like Shakespeare.”
“I notice you didn’t mention Melfy’s husband was coming.”
“Did I mention I’m making wine slushies?”
“Did I mention how much I love Shakespeare?”
And so it was that The Wife, The Son and I packed up the wine slushies, cheese, crackers, fruit and water and made our way to Frontier Park for the Riverside Shakespeare Theatre Company’s production of “Much Ado About Nothing.”
Friday night was also the opening reception for the latest exhibit at the Foundry Art Centre just down the street, so we stopped in there first to check out the art and the free appetizers. The theme for the current exhibit is “Contemporary Narrative.” There were some neat pieces and some odd ones. Like most Foundry shows.
It had rained rather heavily earlier in the day, so the park was a soggy mess. Stevie and Melfy had already arrived and staked out a place. It was a decent crowd but nothing like the mobs that show up in Forest Park. The St. Charles version is a much smaller and more intimate affair. It’s not as polished as the St. Louis version but they do a decent job.
The best part about the St. Charles show is that we take The Son with us, and I figure he’s not going to want to sit there for 2.5 hours, so shortly after the show started I took him for a long walk. We we got back it was almost intermission. Had a nice visit with Stevie and Melfy during intermission, then the show started up and The Son and I went for another walk.
Obviously I can’t give you a decent review of the show since I didn’t see most of it but The Wife enjoyed it and said they did a good job so there’s that. She also appreciated that they played it straight and didn’t try to set it in the 1950s or the Wild West or anything.
I appreciated the exercise. And the wine slushies. Wine is much better in slushy form.
Much Ado About Nothing continues next weekend. http://riversidetheatreco.com/
Contemporary Narrative runs through July 29 at the Foundry. http://www.foundryartcentre.org