10 Facts About The Greenshow
Every Monday-Saturday during the summer, starting on June 21, the Festival puts on a 30 minute Greenshow that starts at 7:10 p.m. This family-friendly outdoor entertainment contains singing, dancing, stories, music, and audience participation.
This season, the themes include: The Hills of Appalachia, English Regency Garden Party, and Paiute Heritage and Celebration, which will rotate on different nights throughout the week. To find out which show is on for the night, visit our calendar at bard.org.
Held on the Ashton Family Greenshow Commons, the show is free and open to the public. It is the perfect way to get a taste of the Festival, or to settle in before an evening production. We can’t wait to see you there!
- Britannia Howe is returning to direct The Greenshow once again. She has plenty of experience at the Festival, having directed it in 2018, 2019, and 2021. Howe also directed Cymbeline in 2021 in the Anes Studio Theatre.
- The Hills of Appalachia is “influenced by themes in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, myths of fairy folklore,” says Howe. A Midsummmer Night’s Dream plays this season in the Englestad Shakespeare Theatre.
- English Regency Garden Party is a theme that hasn’t been done before at The Greenshow, and takes its inspiration from Jane Austen’s Emma The Musical, being performed in the Randall L. Jones Theatre this season.
- Inspired by the Paiute Tribal Youth Performers from the Paiute Indian Tribe of Utah who performed each night preceding The Greenshow in 2021 and 2022, this is the first time that another group outside of the Festival has ever been in charge of a Greenshow night.
- Barbara Adams, the wife of the late Festival Founder Fred C. Adams, was the force that continually kept The Greenshow improving and growing. The Festival was founded in 1961, and in those beginning years, Barbara actually taught a group to play recorders and go downtown to sing medieval music and invite people to come to the Festival that evening.
- A form of pre-show entertainment, the early years of the show contained a version of dancing, music, and a Punch and Judy puppet show. Now, The Greenshow rotates through three different nights, each containing an elaborately different theme.
- The Greenshow is very reminiscent of theatre during Shakespeare’s time. It was common for stages to have an open pit in front, where people could stand and watch. Our beautiful green lawn area represents this open space. Additionally, with minimal scenery, the dialogue, dancing, and music is the most important part––just like in Shakespeare’s day.
- When Shakespeare’s plays were performed during his time, the performances took place in the afternoon because it was too dark at night. Our Greenshows perform during daylight as well, so no additional lighting is necessary. Also, the colorful costumes– just like they were years ago– are an important part of the production.
- Enjoy a tart during the show! Did you know that we have lovely employees that walk around in traditional Shakespearean costumes and sell our famous tarts that will be made by a local bakery? What could be better?!
- The Greenshow is extremely family-friendly. It’s common for entire families to come together, with young children dancing to the music and often being selected for audience participation if they wish to volunteer. Some people even bring picnics or their dogs––the more, the merrier!
The Greenshow will open June 21 and run until September 9. Don’t miss out! For more information, and to purchase tickets to the season’s plays, visit bard.org.