This summer, the Shake on the Lake (SOTL) Summer Theatre Festival brings national theatrical talent to set up stage outdoors on the shores of Silver Lake, New York for its inaugural season. Founded in 2011 as the first live outdoor summer theatre festival in Wyoming County, the mission of the festival “is to entertain, engage and enrich those in the community by creating professional theatre productions in a natural outdoor setting.”
The company of Josh Rice, Chad Bradford, and Austin Blunk will perform The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (Abridged) by Adam Long, Daniel Singer & Jess Winfield on July 26, 27, and 28 at the Village of Perry Public Beach.
Shows will be every evening at 6:30pm, with a matinee performance on July 28th at 2:00pm. Cost of admission is $10.
Shake on the Lake is the brainchild of Josh Rice, a Theatre Artist who grew up on the shores of Silver Lake, NY. After graduating from Perry High School in 1999, he pursued a career in the theatre, including stints at Shakespeare's Globe Theatre in London, at Geva Theatre Center, the Arkansas Shakespeare Theatre, the Arkansas Art Center Children’s Theatre, ImprovLittleRock, and the Pennsylvania Renaissance Faire. Although he has traveled far from Perry, he has always had a dream of bringing live, outdoor theatre to his hometown. While visiting last summer, Josh was inspired by the revitalization of Main Street in downtown Perry when he first considered bringing live Shakespeare to the area: "The rejuvenation of Perry's Main Street inspired me to do what I loved, and give back to the community that gave me so much growing up. And the best way I knew to give back was through the arts," says Rice.
With the support of the Arts Council for Wyoming County, the Village of Perry, and members of the Perry/Silver Lake community, Mr. Rice will be doing just that – producing the first live outdoor theatre festival in the county. The stage for the performances will be the Village of Perry Public Beach, with the picturesque landscape of Silver Lake contributing as the backdrop of the festival. Silver Lake has had a history of contributing to the arts in New York State, dating back to the late 19th Century with the establishment of the Silver Lake Institute, an artistic and cultural retreat of the period.
The Shake on the Lake Company also includes two other nationally renowned theatre artists, Chad Bradford (M.F.A. Acting, Penn St. University), and rising young talent, Austin Blunk (Junior B.F.A. student at SCAD). Mr. Bradford, Mr. Blunk, and Mr. Rice first met as performers in Little Rock, AR in 2005, and have collaborated frequently over the years.
In addition to performances of The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (Abridged) by Adam Long, Daniel Singer & Jess Winfield, Shake on the Lake will also include Educational Outreach Workshops in Stage Combat, Interpreting Shakespeare, Improv Comedy and Shakespeare Out-Loud, a community-wide read-through of Romeo & Juliet. Workshops take place at various locations in the Perry-Silver Lake area in July, as listed here:
Follow SOTL through blog updates + Facebook to see them in action & get a taste of what's to come!
SOTL has a fundraising goal of $1500 to support production, logistics & marketing efforts, AND to plan for the festival's future in Perry/Castile/Silver Lake, NY. Visit SOTL on Kickstarter for a video intro to Shake on the Lake, information on pledge levels and perks, and get your tickets through the pledge campaign. The minimum pledge is $1.