Less Shakespeare and More Musical in the Park

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The cast of The Public Theater's Shakespeare in the Park production of <em>Love's Labour's Lost</em> at the Delacorte Theater.

The second offering from The Public Theater’s free Shakespeare in the Park this summer is a musical adaptation of Love’s Labour’s Lost, the Bard's early comedy about four young men who swear off romance to devote themselves to study, only to promptly fall in love. The play has been adapted and directed by Alex Timbers, the director of Peter and the Starcatcher, among many other shows, and the songs are by Michael Friedman, the house composer of the downtown theater troupe the Civilians.

Shakespeare scholars and purists will find little of the original text in this version which is set at a college reunion. New York Times theater critic Charles Isherwood tells us about other changes to the plot and characters and whether we'll be pleasantly surprised or scandalized by this new production at the Delacorte Theater in Central Park.