7/31 & 8/1: 28th Annual Shakespeare in the Valley at the West Kortright Centre

 On Friday, July 31 and Saturday, August 1, the West Kortright Centre’s Young People’s Theater Arts Workshops will present the 28th Annual Shakespeare in the Valley weekend. This year’s YPTAW Workshops and Shakespeare in the Valley are co-sponsored by Clark Companies, Frank Lumia Real Estate Plus, and New York Central Mutual Insurance.

Each evening begins at 6 PM with an indoor production of “Childhood Champions and their Fantastical Feats.” This celebration of classic characters is performed by the Introduction to Acting Workshop cast of 9–12 year-olds, taught by YPTAW alumnae Vanessa Van Burek and Mary Claire Davis, with music by Anaar Desai-Stephens.

Following this show, there will be a picnic dinner (bring your own, or purchase hot dogs and veggie burgers on-site).

At 8 PM, the lights go up on a fully staged outdoor performance of William Shakespeare’s Henry VIII, directed by YPTAW alumnus Zane Relethford and performed by twenty three 2015 Shakespeare Workshop participants, ages 12-19. To lighten the feeling of this dramatic tragedy, Relethford has reimagined the play as a television sitcom, while staying true to the script. The production includes original music by Academy Award-winner John DeNicola and lyrics by Patty Maloney, directed by Jake DeNicola.

Participants of the Costume Design YPTAW class, taught by Melissa (Moss) Margadona, are responsible for design, production, and backstage dressing. The technical aspects of the show–lights, sound and set–are designed and run by YPTAW alumnus Ian Austin and set-builder Tony Aukstikalnis.
Audience members are advised to bring their own lawn seating. The rain date for both nights is Sunday, August 2 at 8 PM. Tickets are $12 per evening; $5 for children 2-11; free for children under 2.

This long-standing theater program for teens is one of the most important programs that the West Kortright Centre offers to the community. Scholarships are available based on financial need, allowing many students to attend who otherwise would not be able to participate. Several YPTAW alumni are currently pursuing active theater or film careers. These summer theater workshops have played an important role throughout the formative years of many of its participants, developing self-confidence and lasting friendships among young people from a wide-range of backgrounds.

The West Kortright Centre is located midway between Oneonta, Delhi, and Stamford. Follow signs from state Route 23 in Davenport Center or state Route 10 east of Delhi. For exact travel directions, visit www.westkc.org.

2015 West Kortright Centre arts and community programs are funded in part by our members, by contributors to the 2015 Program Fund Drive and to the Nancy Fales Garrett Workshop Scholarship Fund, by the Bert Santora Trust, and by grants from the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature and from the O’Connor, Robinson-Broadhurst, and Dewar foundations.