Cast and crew from a previous festival performance

Shakespeare festival promises another summer of drama

Preparations for this year’s Canterbury Shakespeare Festival are already well underway.

The festival is in its fifth year and in the past has seen up to six of the Bard’s plays performed at locations throughout the city.

This year will see performances of Timon of Athens, Hamlet, King Lear and The Merry Wives of Windsor as well as Schiller’s Mary Stuart.

The festival was originally set up by students from the University of Kent, but has since grown hugely to involve members of the wider community.

Founder Benjamin Chamberlain said: “I began the festival to provide a place for students at universities, as well as local amateur theatre lovers, to share their love of the Bard.

“I wanted to create something that had an impact during the summertime of Canterbury.

“This festival allowed people to come and have a beautiful evening, with family and friends, as well as enjoy Shakespeare right on their doorstep.

“My goal, for this festival, was to provide theatre to the local community, give it life, and together create productions, which engage a wide audience and serves Canterbury.”

Locations for performances have included Dane John Gardens, Greyfriars Garden, the Canterbury Tales, St Augustine’s Abbey and the University of Kent campus.

This year’s performances will take place in late July and early August.

Timon of Athens is this year’s free show. For more information, log on to the festival website.

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