Summers often mean summer reading for middle and high schoolers. Whether or not Shakespeare is on your tween’s list this year, take advantage of the wealth of summer Shakespeare productions and get an entertaining Shakespeare lesson.
Shakespeare By The Sea (www.shakespearebythesea.org) stages its shows, which are always free, all over Southern California, beginning this year at San Pedro’s Point Fermin Park with “The Taming of the Shrew” June 15 and “Macbeth” June 22.
Kingsmen Shakespeare Festival (www.kingsmenshakespeare.org) at California Lutheran University commences its season with “Love’s Labour’s Lost” June 30, followed by “Julius Caesar” opening July 21. Lawn box tickets seating four to six adults are $90-$110. Individual tickets are $20 for ages 18 and up.
Long Beach Shakespeare Company (www.lbshakespeare.org) has the same two plays on its summer schedule, although they will hail “Caesar” first (May 26-June 17) and find “Lost” second (Aug. 25-Sept. 16). Tickets are $12.50-$25.
Theatricum Botanicum (www.theatricum.com) performs “The Merchant of Venice” and “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” in Topanga beginning June 3 and 4, respectively, and continuing throughout the summer. Tickets: $25-$38 adults, $15-$25 students, $10 children.
The Hollywood Fringe Festival (www.hollywoodfringe.org) presents several eclectic Shakespeare adaptations, ranging from “Hamlet ¿Estás O No Estás?” and “Titus Sharkdronicus” to “The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (Abridged)” and an all-female version of “The Tempest” during June. Locations and prices vary.
The Independent Shakespeare Company (www.iscla.org) always finds fresh ways to stage free Shakespeare in Griffith Park. See what they’ve come up with for “Measure For Measure” June 24-July 23 and “Two Gentlemen of Verona” July 29-Sept. 3. They will do pre-show family workshops for “Measure” July 2 and 9 and “Verona” Aug. 6 and 20.
Antaeus Theatre Company (www.antaeus.org) of Glendale rounds out our roundup. They’ll perform “As You Like It” July 29-Sept. 10. Admission to the previews is $15. Regular admission is $30-$34 adults and $25 for students.