by - Friday, May 11, 2018

I was invited to an extremely unique picnic experience with SRT some time last week to catch the premiere of this year’s Shakespeare in the Park. I’ve been to numerous theatre plays in Singapore but mostly indoors. Outdoors? This was a first.

This year, Shakespeare in the Park makes its highly-anticipated groundbreaking return this May 2018 with Julius Caesar. Directed by Guy Unsworth, the same Director who directed Hand to God, this production brings forth Shakespeare’s political thriller with a touch of modern-day international relations and global current affairs.

Here’s a quick synopsis for those who aren’t caught on about Julius Caesar:

“Ambition, power, and greed collide as the leaders of the R.O.M.E 7 countries gather for a summit. It’s time for them to decide who their allies really are. Trouble brews as the weather grows disturbingly ominous, and plots to assassinate the ever ambitious Caesar are hatched. Are Caesar’s conspirators truly doing a righteous deed? Or is chaos and defeat inevitable?”

Doors open at 6:00PM for you to get comfortable and grab a nice spot for viewing. Before the show commences, you are also able to visit their stage and take a couple of selfies! Trust me when I say the stage is amazing. Being in art department means that I take particular note whenever I get to step into a set. And Julius Caesar’s stage was plain kick-ass. All of the details, in-corporate with modern technology, the stage was literally a mechanic moving platform of wonders. You get to see how the set changes to many different locations in just matter of seconds. From meeting hall, to rooms, to a fountain party, many many more!

After settling down, you can head over to the booths and grab yourself some food and drinks. Would suggest you bring along something that could work as a table so your drinks don’t topple! The seating area is basically a slope so not too ideal to have your drinks standing. Door closes the moment the play starts. They do have intermissions, but apart from that, doors will be closed throughout so that it doesn’t disrupt the play.

We even got invited onto the stage and be part of the play! It was crazy facing the crowd with all the spotlight shining on you. With the lights highlighting the stage, it really felt like it was a whole new other world! All the actors were so absorbed into their roles it was as if we really walked into Rome and got involved in their political dispute. We were even chased off stage when riot was about to start. I swear that was terrifying. You really have no idea and all of the sudden, the entire scene changed!

Starring well known theatre names, Jo Kukathas (Romeo & Juliet) as Julius Caesar alongside Ghafir Akbar (Disgraced), Daniel Jenkins (Hand to God, Romeo & Juliet), Thomas Pang (Hand to God, Romeo & Juliet) and Julie Wee (The Merchant of Venice).

Here’s a few tips to note if you are attending!

- Be early to get better viewing spot
- Bring your own snacks if you are the kind to nibble during a show! They do have booths for food and drinks, but it can get pretty costly.
- Bring a plastic bag for your own trash, and please clear it at the bins available!
- Pillows for extra comfort is a must!
- Bring along an umbrella just in case because it is entirely outdoor and closest shelter is probably.....locked.
- Bring a picnic mat big enough for 3 – 4 people for extra comfort!
- Dress comfortable, because it can get pretty warm.

Last but not least, spread your picnic blanket under the stars and be mesmerised by the beautiful set and amazing cast. Enjoy the show!

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