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'Much Ado About Nothing' highlights Shakespeare Festival's expanded 20th-anniversary season

'Much Ado About Nothing' highlights Shakespeare Festival's expanded 20th-anniversary season

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'Romeo & Juliet' at Forest Park

A crowd fills Shakespeare Glen in Forest Park for opening night of Shakespeare Festival St. Louis' 2018 production of "Romeo & Juliet."

For its 20th annual free production in Forest Park, Shakespeare Festival St. Louis will present the Bard's comedy "Much Ado About Nothing."

The production in Shakespeare Glen runs May 29 through June 21 (with preview performances May 27-28). Bruce Longworth, a resident artist with the festival, directs. 

In honor of its anniversary, the troupe will also bring its touring production of "Cymbeline" to the Glen on May 8-9 as part of the festival's Birthday Bash weekend, which will include food trucks, music and family activities.

A festival of Shakespeare-related films will be presented there May 15-17. The films will include "10 Things I Hate About You" (May 15), inspired by "The Taming of the Shrew" and starring Heath Ledger and Julia Stiles; Disney's 1994 animated version of "The Lion King" (May 16), the tale of a feline hero not unlike Hamlet; and "Theater of Blood" (May 17), featuring St. Louis native Vincent Price as a vengeful Shakespearean actor.

Tom Ridgely, producing artistic director of Shakespeare Festival St. Louis, attributes its enduring success to "an extremely welcoming and beautiful setting in Forest Park. And I think, from the beginning, the festival has made it a priority to offer the very highest quality of production that it could."

All events are free. Find more information at sfstl.com.

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