I've always thought of the seasonal pleasures of outdoor Shakespeare as something best reserved for evening, when the sun's down and the air might be at least marginally cooler than in the afternoon.
So I was bemused to learn that the Boomerang Theatre Company's production of The Tempest is performed in the heat of the day--matinees only.
But it had been way too long since I'd seen The Tempest, outdoors or in, so today I hied myself up to Central Park West in time for what would have been a 2 o'clock curtain, if there were a curtain.
Unlike some other companies that do summer Shakespeare, the Boomerang doesn't make their audience move--a good thing on a muggy summer afternoon. And though the ground where I pitched my blanket was mostly dust, tall trees provided ample shade.
Soon, the play cast its spell, and I forgot all about the heat. Something about the green canopy, the stage of rocks and dirt, and actors almost close enough to touch made me feel as if I were on Prospero's island, where it is often, if not always day.
Weather permitting you have five chances to catch this charming production: Sunday, June 27, and July 10, 11, 17, and 18.