See Hamlet in the Park With All the Famous Lines–Only 100 Minutes

Samuel Cheeseman as Hamlet and Bianca Phipps as Ophelia. Photo by Zach Whittington. The Prince of Denmark is going to the park this summer. You'll be able to see a 100-minute version of Hamlet at four city parks in July and August. Venues are Touhy Park, Schreiber Park, Gross Park and Lincoln Park. Midsommer Flight's summer 2017 production of Hamlet, Prince of Denmark is performed in an abridged 100-minute version that captures the murderous intrigues of the royal family--complete enough for those familiar with the play and accessible for newcomers. Some of Shakespeare's most famous lines, such as “to be or not to be,” “the play’s the thing” and “to thine own self be true,”are spoken.  They're a delight for those who anticipate them and a surprise for those who will learn the real source of these venerable statements. Hamlet is directed by Beth Wolf, the company’s founder and producing artistic director, who has directed all the company’s productions since its founding in 2012. The play, which began performances July 8, is being presented in four different Chicago city parks through Sunday, August 27. Hamlet is performed on the ground, with natural lighting (curtain times are early enough to complete performances before sunset) and without amplification, just as in Shakespeare’s day. All performances are free. Live music will be presented a half hour before each performance. Audiences are encouraged to come early and bring a picnic to enjoy this free programming. Seating is first come, first served, and audience members can bring their own blankets or chairs. Show information below and at, including detailed schedule and info about directions and parking at each park. Hamlet By William Shakespeare Directed by Beth Wolf July 8 – August 27, 2017 Saturdays at 6 PM and Sundays at 2 PM Venues and schedule: ·        July 22-23 @ Touhy Park (7348 N Paulina, 60626) ·        July 29-30 and August 5-6 @ Schreiber Park (1552 W Schreiber, 60626) ·        August 12-13 and 19-20 @ Gross Park (2708 W Lawrence, 60625) ·        August 26-27 @ Lincoln Park (2045 N Lincoln Park West, 60614) Midsommer Flight is a theater company dedicated to presenting high quality, accessible productions of Shakespeare’s plays in Chicago communities. After the company’s inaugural production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream in 2012, the Chicago City Council honored Midsommer Flight with a resolution praising “the Midsommer Flight theater troupe on their dedication to bringing the arts to underserved communities.”  The company has since produced Romeo and Juliet (2013), Much Ado About Nothing (2014), Macbeth (2015), Twelfth Night (2015) and As You Like It (2016).
Picture of the author
Nancy S Bishop

Nancy S. Bishop is publisher and Stages editor of Third Coast Review. She’s a member of the American Theatre Critics Association and a 2014 Fellow of the National Critics Institute at the Eugene O’Neill Theater Center. You can read her personal writing on pop culture at, and follow her on Twitter @nsbishop. She also writes about film, books, art, architecture and design.