With the lifting of COVID-19 restrictions across the state, many local theaters and performing arts companies have moved back inside for their regular performances.
But for anyone who feels like they’ve already spent too much time indoors over the last couple of years, several local companies are still offering opportunities to get out and experience live performances in the open air.
Whether it’s under the stars or lit by sunlight, these companies are presenting productions ranging from Shakespearean classics to a 48-hour theater festival, from a new take on “Anne of Green Gables” to “Power Rangers” -inspired family-friendly fare. The events below are subject to change, so it’s best to call ahead and double check websites to confirm any plans.
“Beauty and the Beast” and “Bend in the Road, The Anne of Green Gables Musical” presented by Kitsap Forest Theater
The Kitsap Forest Theater, located in the midst of the 460-acre Rhododendron Preserve near Bremerton, offers two summer productions at its amphitheater surrounded by fir trees. Disney’s “Beauty and the Beast” offers the classic tale of Belle and the prince who must learn to love and be loved. Postponed from 2020, “Bend in the Road” is a new family musical based on the novel “Anne of Green Gables” by Lucy Maud Montgomery. Orphan Anne Shirley is mistakenly adopted by siblings Marilla and Matthew Cuthbert and the musical follows as Anne’s intelligence, joy and imagination change the lives of those around her.
“Beauty and the Beast” runs May 29-June 19 and “Bend in the Road, The Anne of Green Gables Musical” runs July 30-Aug. 21; 3000 Seabeck Hwy., Bremerton; $ 18 (bring your own cushion or folding seat, or rent one with cash from the theater); 206-521-6001; foresttheater.com.
“History Café: Walking the AIDS Memorial Pathway” presented by the Museum of History & Industry
“History Café,” produced as a partnership between MOHAI and HistoryLink, offers a chance to reflect on the lasting impact the AIDS epidemic has had on Seattle. Jason Plourde and Rosette Royale will walk the AIDS Memorial Pathway on Capitol Hill, which uses art and storytelling to create space for remembrance and reflection, and share stories about how the epidemic shaped the community. Space is limited to 25 participants.
June 15; free with registration; details on participation will be provided via email after registration; mohai.org.
“Mega Hero Rangers Go Go Go Supreme !!!” and “The World’s Quickest Theater Festival” presented by The 14/48 Projects
The 14/48 Projects head to select parks around the Seattle area with a family-friendly show and the return of their namesake festival. “Mega Hero Rangers,” inspired by shows like “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles” and “Power Rangers,” follows a group of friends and superheroes who have their powers taken away and have to learn how to navigate the world without powers. “The World’s Quickest Theater Festival” will feature 14 plays written, cast, directed, rehearsed, scored, designed and premiered all within a 48-hour time frame.
“Mega Hero Rangers Go Go Go Supreme !!!” runs weekends in July and “The World’s Quickest Theater Festival” takes place Aug. 19-20 at select Seattle parks, with exact park locations to be announced; free; the1448projects.org.
Seattle Shakespeare Company’s Wooden O productions
Seattle Shakespeare Company’s fairy-tale summer of Wooden O productions, taking place in park venues around the region, will include the romantic chaos of “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” and the magical journey in “Cymbeline.”
July 7-Aug. 7; various locations; free; 206-733-8222; seattleshakespeare.org.
GreenStage’s Shakespeare in the Park and Backyard Bard
For its 34th season of free Shakespeare in the Park, GreenStage’s mainstage plays will be the tragicomedy “Pericles” and the history play “Henry V.” Backyard Bard, which presents stripped down, abbreviated Shakespearean plays, will feature comedy “Much Ado About Nothing” and tragedy “Macbeth.”
July 8-Aug. 13; various locations; free; 206-748-1552; greenstage.org.
Vashon Repertory Theater Fest
Following last year’s festival that featured works like Shakespeare’s “The Tempest” and “Woody Guthrie’s American Song,” the second-annual theater festival will present five yet-to-be-announced shows at three locations over two weekends.
July 21-31; various locations; $ 15- $ 30; 206-769-6029; vashonrepertorytheatre.org.
“The Play’s the Thing” presented by Burien Actors Theater
Burien Actors Theater is taking to parks across South King County with “The Play’s the Thing.” After composer Albert overhears his fiancée Ilona share her affection with another man, playwright Sandor begins to rewrite reality to save Albert from heartbreak, and save his new show in the process. The line between acting and reality blur as Sandor tries to make the incident seem like it was really just dialogue in a play.
July 29-Aug. 21; various locations; free; battheatre.org.