By Todd Hambleton, Cornwall Standard-Freeholder
All the world may be a stage, the men and women merely players.
But some volunteers would be nice, too.
Montreal’s Repercussion Theatre will be presenting Shakespeare in the Park in Cornwall’s Lamoureux Park on Saturday and Sunday (July 7-8), and they’re looking for volunteers to help out.
Volunteers are needed to either to work in the concession tent, or as ushers, with duties including handing out posters, assisting audience members and setting up chairs, among other tasks.
Volunteers who come forward to assist will receive a free Shakespeare in the Park T-shirt to keep, and are asked to arrive on one or both days at 5:30 p.m., with the performances to begin at 7 p.m.
Anyone able to help out is urged to email firstname.lastname@example.org.
The performance? It’s Romeo & Juliet: Love is Love, and the Cornwall stop is the company’s opening for Ontario.
Montreal’s Repercussion Theatre was founded in 1988, and it’s best known for its annual Shakespeare-in-the-Park summer tour.
The Repercussion Theatre is a professional company and non-profit arts organization, with a mission to deliver professional, classically-based, visually dynamic theatre for all.
“We don’t just present Shakespeare’s plays – we enter into dialogue with them,” said artistic director Amanda Kellock. “Just as William Shakespeare used the theatre as a way to ‘hold up a mirror to nature’, we seek to explore the major issues of our time through the work we create.”
It’s Repercussion Theatre’s 30th anniversary season, and 2018 is the largest tour it’s had in a decade, with 30 shows to mark the special year, running from July 5 to Aug. 8.
The tour will be making the usual rounds of local parks in Montreal, as well as to the Eastern Townships, the Laurentians, Hawkesbury and numerous other locations.
The troupe members draw lots to determine who plays which roles, and as luck would have it this time, Romeo and Juliet will be portrayed by women, among other chance gender-bent character assignations.
The company says timeless themes of rebellion, power, pride, fate and the passion and unpredictable nature of love and hate resonate anew in the 400-year-old tale.
“I don’t think we’re doing anything particularly new,” Kellock said. “While Shakespeare has come to be regarded as an untouchable monolith, he himself was not rigid. . . he was like a Renaissance sci-fi playrwright, taking old stories, setting them in far-off, half-imagined places, and applying his contemporary lens to connect with the audiences of his time.”
For more on Repercussion Theatre, visit www.repercussiontheatre.com.