Shakespeare in the Park...uh, Ordean Court

Sep 24, 2020

Credit University of Minnesota Duluth/Dept. of Theatre

In the COVID-19 pandemic era performing artists have been challenged to discover new ways to share their gifts with their audiences.  Some solutions, like streaming on social media, did not even exist two decades ago. 

But other solutions draw upon longstanding - and much less tech-laden - performance methods.

The UMD Department of Theatre has taken the latter approach with the first show of its 2020-21 season, bringing Shakespeare's Henry V outdoors, in broad daylight, akin to the way it was first performed over four centuries ago.

Yes, there are challenges, like the lack of permanent seating, or the threat of cold air or rain.  But director Tom Isbell tells KUMD's Chris Harwood that the advantages are also very promising and allow actors to engage with audiences differently, even during a pandemic.