A Whole Lotta Shakin’ Goin’ On…


That shakin’ is not Elvis, but William --  and it’s all about Shakespeare!

Following up on the success of their inaugural season, the Adirondack Shakespeare Company is again making Schroon Lake their headquarters for their Summer Festival Season.

The first Schroon Lake performance by Adk Shakes, as the company is known, is July 24 at the Boathouse, with many performances scheduled here and at other Adirondack locations  through August 7.

This year’s company consist of 13 actors and a stage manager, from as far away as New Zealand (via NYC), Alabama, California and Pennsylvania, Artistic Director Tara Bradway told Schroon Laker.

"It’s Shakespeare in the raw. We don’t do a lot of rehearsing. Everyone comes prepared. Without a director,  the performances are less about technical direction  or costumes and more about the actors’ performances," Tara said.



Auditions began last November and after each actor was chosen, they were given their roles and started studying their lines for the various productions.   “It’s a much richer performance. It’s their (the actors)  performance, not some director’s vision like we are going to do Shakespeare set in World War II.

"It’s all about the words and the actors connecting to the audience. The audience gets to experience the raw performance as well”. 

Tara, who will again take part in this year’s performances,  says the actors do feel a strong connection with the audience.

"If there’s a dropped line, you can feel the audience members leaning in, willing you on. You can feel the energy.”

Just how the Company ended up making Schroon Lake its summer home can be traced back to 2005 when Tara acted alongside  Patrick Siler, the company’s Executive Director, in a production of Our Town in Delaware.

"Patrick told me about his childhood summers spent at a cabin on the east side of Schroon Lake and his time at Sandy Point,” Tara said.

“He had memories of going to Scaroon Manor, where he would see shows at the amphitheater,  swim and walk the trails. It was always a dream of his to do Shakespeare there”.

That dream turned true in 2009 when Tara and Patrick staged a one off performance of several Shakespeare scenes and monologues on the abandoned stage in their trademark raw style with a cast of six actors. 

In 2010 the company wanted to return to the old Scaroon Manor site, but it was closed that year by New York State. That’s when they approached the Town Of Schroon Lake about using The Boat House.  "We met  Cathy Moses (Town Supervisor) and the dates just worked out."

This year half of the cast is living with host families around Schroon Lake and the others at the Paradox Lake Bed and Breakfast. There is a meet and greet benefit for ADK Shakes on July 7. Email Tara at info@adkshakes.org for information.