Shakespeare at Austin Town Hall Park Wednesday

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Chicago Shakespeare in the Parks will be making a stop at Austin Town Hall Park Wednesday with its performance of “The Taming of the Shrew.”

The free event, put on by the Chicago Shakespeare Theater, the Chicago Park District and The Boeing Co., is set to start at 3:30 p.m Aug. 1 at 5610 W. Lake St.

Shakespeare’s hilarious comedy about the battle between the sexes will feature professional actors in beautiful costumes on a traveling stage, underscored with original rock-inspired music, in this 75-minute, daylight production.

“We are so pleased to welcome Chicago Shakespeare Theater to our parks,” Chicago Park District General Superintendent and CEO Michael Kelly said in a written statement.

“This partnership creates a unique opportunity to enhance cultural offerings at parks across the city and hopefully begin a tradition of bringing free theatrical performances to families citywide,” he said.

Adapted and staged by Jeff Award-winning director Rachel Rockwell, Chicago Shakespeare in the Parks production of “The Taming of the Shrew” features Ericka Ratcliff performing the role of strong-willed Katharina and Matt Mueller performing the role of Katharina’s sparring partner Petruchio.

The acting company also includes: Jeffrey Baumgartner, Tiffany Yvonne Cox, Max Ganet, José Antonio García, Eric Leonard, Kate LoConti, Robert Joseph Miller, Karack Osborn, Matthew Sherbach, Mick Weber and Jarrod Zimmerman.

“As Chicago’s ‘home for Shakespeare’ for the past quarter century, CST has delighted in introducing millions of audience members to his timeless plays,” said Barbara Gaines, Chicago Shakespeare Theater’s artistic director.

“We are honored by this opportunity to make Shakespeare free for all Chicagoans and to share his insight and humor in a high-energy professional production under the summer skies. Prepare to fall in love with Shakespeare — for the first time, or all over again,” she said in the press release.

The new citywide arts initiative, the largest of its kind in the history of the Chicago Park District, is made possible by a grant from The Boeing Co., with additional support from BMO Harris Bank, Madison Dearborn Partners, Sara Lee Foundation and the Chicago Shakespeare Trust.

In addition to Austin Town Hall Park, other central region parks that will feature performances include: Dvorak Park, Douglas Park, Garfield Park Conservatory, Humboldt Park and Gateway Park at Navy Pier.

Click here to see the entire lineup on a map by the Chicago Shakespeare Theater.

For more information on Chicago Shakespeare in the Parks, visit

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