Dark tragedy and (hopefully) pleasant Minnesota evenings will come together this month as the long-running Shakespeare & Company ensemble presents King Lear outdoors at Century College in White Bear Lake. Shakespeare's oft-presented and adapted work delves deep into the mind of the title character, who, in a bid to preserve his kingdom by splitting it between his two "favorite" daughters, manages instead to destroy it, his family, and his own sanity. Jerome Urman plays the title role and Carrie Ann Bishop plays Cordelia. Jeffrey Altier directs. If that's too much tragedy for you, Shakespeare & Company also has two other productions on tap for July. The first is the broad farce of The Comedy of Errors. The other is the lesser-known The Two Noble Kinsmen, which was a collaboration between Shakespeare and contemporary playwright John Fletcher. All three pieces are presented outdoors (you'll need to provide your own seating, be it lawn chair or blanket), and the company encourages an informal atmosphere for the evening—from dining on picnic fare to letting children roam free.
Fri., July 1, 7 p.m.; Sun., July 3, 7 p.m.; Sat., July 9, 7 p.m.; Sun., July 17, 6 p.m.; Fri., July 22, 7 p.m.; Sat., July 30, 7 p.m., 2011