(Photos courtesy of Roman Iwasiwka Photography)
WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. -- High-school students throughout Berkshire County are readying for an annual bout of performing the bard -- the 19th Annual Fall Shakespeare Festival -- and the most famous of the British playwright's works, Romeo & Juliet, will be performed this Thursday and Friday at Mount Greylock Regional High School.
Tickets are only $5 for students and $7 for adults and organizers say there will be a cornucopia of refreshments and baked goods during each intermission. There is no Saturday performance. The Greylock show stars seniors Davy Payne as Romeo and Lizzie Fox as Juliet.
The Mount Greylock cast will also perform at 6:30 p.m. on Fri., Nov. 16 at the Founders' Theater at Shakespeare & Co. in Lenox. Other high schools in the Berkshires will join Mount Greylock students on Thurs.-Sat., Nov. 15-17, in back-to-back performances of the bard's plays at Shakespeare & Co.'s Lenox campus. Those performances are also public. For a full schedule go to the website, or call the box office at (413) 637-3353.
"The Fall Festival has a very specific aesthetic," says Libby Augarten, a Shakespeare & Co. staffer assigned to co-direct the Mount Greylock production. "We wait until auditions are over to choose a play, so we can pick the one that's just right for a particular group of students."
The process of picking the right play from Shakespeare's repertoire for each school can be painstaking, says Augarten. "The students and directors generate the work together, and the process is just as important as the finished production. We ask the students to make decisions, have opinions, take risks, be articulate about their feelings, and be themselves."