By Art Holliday
ST. LOUIS (KSDK) - Several hundred people attended an unconventional Shakespeare performance Thursday night in the Grove neighborhood. The three-day event is called Shakespeare on the Streets. The street is blocked off and performances take place on Manchester near Arco.
"It's half professional actors, it's half community, residents and people who work in the community," said director Eric Wild. "The actors are all the time helping teach the community people how to act. But the community people know the community and it's a play about the community that we wrote so the community people are often saying that's not right."
You might describe the adapted performance as "inspired by Shakespeare."
"I think there's a speech or two that is Shakespeare but mostly it's it's a contemporary adaptation," said Wild. Playwright Nancy Bell adapted Shakespeare's "The Winter's Tale."
Under a full moon, one of the actors moonlighting was St. Louis administrative law Judge Karla Boresi, a resident of the Grove neighborhood.
"When I heard they were going to be doing a production in my neighborhood I knew I had to get involved, so I auditioned and was selected to represent the community," said Boresi. "I studied Shakespeare in high school but I haven't been on stage in any form of acting since high school."
Donald McClendon estimates he's acted in at least seven Shakespearean performances.
"We love Shakespeare because of the stories," said McClendon. "it's not just the type of everyday language that you hear and because of that, that's why we engage in a lot of what Shakespeare brings across to us."
The final two performances are Friday and Saturday at 8 p.m. For more information, visit their website.