Public Theater announces Shakespeare in the Park to return for 2021
Jocelyn Bioh’s adaptation of The Merry Wives of Windsor will entertain audiences this summer.
Last year’s Shakespeare in the Park season was cancelled due to the pandemic. But, Shakespeare’s words will continue to live on at the Delacorte Theater, as Shakespeare in the Park returns for 2021. This year, audiences can enjoy a new adaptation of The Merry Wives of Windsor, playing from July 5 - September 20.
The Shakespeare comedy will now be set in south Harlem, in a community of West African immigrants, with the production aiming to celebrate Black joy and laughter. The Merry Wives of Windsor is adapted by Jocelyn Bioh, whose credits include Nollywood Dreams and School Girls; Or, the African Mean Girls Play, with direction by Saheem Ali.
The all-black casting for The Merry Wives of Windsor is completed by Abena, Shola Adewusi, Gbenga Akinnagbe, Pascale Armand, MaYaa Boateng, Phillip James Brannon, Brandon E. Burton, Joshua Echebiri, Branden Lindsay, Ebony Marshall-Oliver, Jarvis D. Matthews, Jacob Ming-Trent, Jennifer Mogbock, Julian Rozzell Jr., Kyle Scatliffe, David Ryan Smith, and Susan Kelechi Watson.
All performances at the Delacorte Theater will be staged in line with New York guidelines. Advice will also be provided by health and safety experts and theatrical unions. Although The Merry Wives of Windsor marks one of the first New York shows to confirm a full run in summer 2021, following news that theatres can open from April 2021.
Photo credit: Jocelyn Bioh (IBDB) and Public Theater (courtesy of Public Theater)