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Shakespeare Fest moves 'Much Ado' to 2022, plans socially distant stroll this summer

Shakespeare Fest moves 'Much Ado' to 2022, plans socially distant stroll this summer

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Love's Labors Lost

From left: Vivienne Claire Luthin, Kea Trevett, Laura Sohn and Kiah McKirnan in the Shakespeare Festival St. Louis production of "Love's Labors Lost." Photo by Philip Hamer

The St. Louis Shakespeare Festival has postponed its production of “Much Ado About Nothing” until the summer of 2022 because of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. The play had been rescheduled to run Aug. 12-Sept. 6 at Shakespeare Glen in Forest Park.

In a statement, producing artistic director Tom Ridgely said that “the safety of the artists” was the determining factor.

“The actors’ union hired a very well-qualified epidemiologist to assess the situation, and their determination was that it just wouldn’t be safe to return to work this summer,” Ridgely said.

“We wish it could be otherwise, but we have to trust the experts and not take any chances when it comes to people’s health and wellbeing.”

The festival instead will present “A Late Summer Night’s Stroll” on Tuesday through Sunday evenings Aug. 12-Sept. 6. Loosely inspired by Shakespeare’s “A Midsummer Night’s Dream,” the event is described as a “socially distant walking experience in Forest Park” featuring music, dance and visual art.

Groups participating in the free, 90-minute walk will be limited to 10 people. Registration begins July 13, and donations of $20 are suggested. Post-walk picnics will be available at an additional charge.

The title of the 2021 summer St. Louis Shakespeare Festival production has not been announced. 

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