Summer theater in New York to get excited about

This summer brings a wide array of exciting new productions

Starting this month, several exciting shows will arrive at some of New York's most prestigious theater institutions.

While the New York theater may be focused on this June's Tony Awards, new Broadway and Off-Broadway productions are preparing to make some noise in the traditionally quiet summer season. From immersive theater events to Shakespeare classics and beyond, here's a quick look at the productions you should keep your eyes on if you're a New York resident or just coming in for a visit.

Shakespeare in the Park

A summer institution in New York City, this year sees The Public Theater offering brand new productions of two of Shakespeare's most famous plays, Julius Caesar and A Midsummer Night's Dream. Staged in the Delacorte Theater in the heart of Central Park, the productions allow New York audiences to experience Shakespeare's language in one of the loveliest outdoor spaces in all of Manhattan. With familiar faces like Corey Stoll, Elizabeth Marvel, Phylicia Rashad, and Annaleigh Ashford appearing in them, one would expect these shows to be pricey tickets, however every ticket is free and distributed both in person and online. With both productions only here for limited engagements, these two should be at the top of anyone's theater wish list this summer.

1984

Imagine a world where an authoritarian government attempts to control reality and attempts to force its citizens to blindly follow its orders. Sound familiar? Well this summer a new adaptation of George Orwell's classic 1984 will arrive on Broadway after acclaimed runs in the UK and Cambridge, Massachusetts. Boasting a talented cast including Olivia Wilde and Tony Award winner Reed Birney and some painfully timely themes, the production has the potential to serve as a thoughtful piece of art for these troubled times. Beginning later this month and currently set to run to October, those looking for some serious thought provoking drama should look no further than the watch of Big Brother.

Ghost Light

For those seeking a more immersive theater experience, this summer Lincoln Center Theatre will be staging the newest show from Third Rail Projects, the theater company behind immersive productions like the acclaimed Then She Fell. Their newest work promises to take audience members deep into the secrets of a theater in a production that lets guests leave the audience section and move about spaces they likely never knew existed. For those tired of just sitting and clapping at the theater, expect Ghost Light to teach you a whole new way to participate in theater.

Prince of Broadway

This August, Manhattan Theatre Club will debut a new musical tribute to the work of Director and Producer Harold Prince. While those outside the theater community may not recognize his name, the 21-time Tony Award winner has had a hand in shaping Broadway's biggest hits including Sweeney Todd, Phantom of the Opera, Cabaret, West Side Story, and much more. Offering selections from these shows as well as new music and orchestrations from Tony Winner Jason Robert Brown, for anyone looking for classic Broadway musical theater but can't bring themselves to pick just one show, why not go with Prince and have a taste of it all.

Hamlet

Arguably the Bard's most celebrated text, this summer troubled Danish Prince returns to New York stages in a new production led by Oscar Isaac in the title role. Staged by Tony Winner Sam Gold at the Public Theater's downtown space, the production promises an intimate version of the show also featuring comedy star Keegan Michael Key as Horatio. While the production is sure to be a hot ticket, tickets remain available for the later portions of the run, especially in the discounted partial view sections. If your dream is to see Poe Dameron ask "To Be or Not to Be?", this might be the best chance you'll ever have.

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