18 Mount Morris Park West, New York, NY 10027
CTH Under the Stars
For its annual free summer production, CTH proudly presents the classic The Tempest by William Shakespeare, directed by Carl Cofield. The production will run from July 3 through July 26 at the Richard Rodgers Amphitheater in Marcus Garvey Park. Cofield helmed the critically-acclaimed production of Amiri Baraka/LeRoi Jones’s Dutchman for CTH last spring. He brings back many artists from that creative team to work on The Tempest, including: Christopher and Justin Swader (scenic design), Rachel Dozier-Ezell (costume design), Alan C. Edwards (lighting design), Eric Sluyter (sound design) and Ralph Stan Lee (stage management).
“What fascinates me about the play—and its iconic characters of Prospero, Caliban, and Ariel—is that it’s a theatrical gumbo, with an intricate blend of usurping villains, youthful romance, music, humor, and conspiracy,” said Cofield. “I am also intrigued by how the protagonist Prospero’s quest for justice leads him to become unjust himself.”
Sharing his concept for the CTH production, Cofield continues, “Prospero’s magical island could be anywhere. Our production references the enchanting island of Hispaniola, the island that is home to both the Dominican Republic and Haiti. The history of Haiti is nothing short of magical. This tiny Caribbean country won its independence by defeating three European superpowers: France, Britain and Spain, demonstrating the same fighting spirit found in Caliban, and the same longing for freedom as Ariel. The Tempest highlights the dynamics of freedom and captivity, imprisonment and rebellion, authority and tyranny. My hope is that after spending time with these characters, we learn something about ourselves.”
The Richard Rodgers Amphitheater is located in Marcus Garvey Park (enter at 124th Street and Fifth Avenue and walk south to the venue). Performances are Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Saturday and Sunday at 8:00 p.m. Friday’s curtain is at 8:15 p.m., following Jazzmobile’s free concerts at 7:00 p.m. The venue opens for seating at 7:00 p.m. each night and 6:30 p.m. on Fridays.
The Tempest is presented by The Classical Theatre of Harlem and City Parks Foundation’s SummerStage festival. All performances are free and no tickets are required.