The Inaugural William Shakespeare’s Birthday Bash! is a day-long street festival of the arts celebrating the birth, life, and works of William Shakespeare. Activities include performances of “Shakespeare Shorts”, visual art, music, street performers, activities for the kids, food, and drink.
Our Mainstage will be outside (weather permitting) with 45-minute (or less) condensed versions from our collection of “Shakespeare Shorts”. Shorts will be presented on an hourly rotation throughout the day. Shorts performed this year are:
A Midsummer Night’s Dream: Just the Lovers
A Midsummer Night’s Dream: Just the Mechanicals
Twelfth Night: Malvolio’s Tale
Other events include a Music Venue where guests can enjoy live music indoors while sipping on a specially crafted Shakespeare-themed beverage; A Kids’ Domain with face painting, other crafty kid’s activities and students from Studio Grand Central’s Big Break For kids acting class performing Shakespeare. There is an art gallery in the Studio Grand Central Gallery currated by the Morean Arts Center. And guests can visit our “Shakespeare Insult Tent”. What could be better than being called a “canker blossom” in front of friends and family? All in good fun, of course.
On the evening of April 23, the festival will host a showcase of Shakespearean performances by adult acting students from our “Big Break Shakespeare” acting class and St Pete Shakes will announce its upcoming 2022/2023 season.
The Birthday Bash will take place April 23 starting at 10 am in and around Studio Grand Central (2260 1st Ave South) in St Petersburg. Half a block of 23rd Street South will be blocked off from traffic and filled with performances and Shakespearean fun. Outdoor activities and performances will take place from 10 am to 7 pm. The Showcase will begin at 7:30 pm inside Studio Grand Central.
St Petersburg Shakespeare Festival is a theater company dedicated to generating cultural engagement in the St Petersburg, and Bay Area, community through the works of William Shakespeare. We pursue community enrichment through innovative educational opportunities, local arts partnerships, and quality live performances. In addition, we firmly believe that the arts and culture are for all the community, and to that end we keep general admission low and provide opportunities for students to attend performances without a general admission charge.
Producing Artistic Director, GJ Thompson, PhD, says “This is our most ambitious project yet and reflects the company’s longstanding goal to create a festival atmosphere to enjoy Shakespeare. We are excited to bring this event to St Petersburg and we look forward to doing so for many years to come.”
This year’s festival is brought to you by St Petersburg Shakespeare Festival and Off-Central Players, with the generous support of our community partners Studio Grand Central, Think Tank Theater, the St Petersburg Arts Alliance, and The Gobioff Foundation. St Pete Shakes is a proud member of the St Petersburg Chamber of Commerce.
General Admission to the event is $10.00 for adults, kids 12 and under are free. Students with a valid school ID are free. VIP tickets, food, beverages, and merchandise are available for purchase.