Shakespeare troupe returns to Shelton’s Riverwalk

Actors in Adventures of Pericles, which opens July 15, 2021, at the Riverwalk in Shelton.

Actors in Adventures of Pericles, which opens July 15, 2021, at the Riverwalk in Shelton.

Contributed photo /

SHELTON - Valley Shakespeare Festival is back outdoors, opening its ninth annual Shakespeare In The Park summer show beginning Thursday, July 15.

This year's free offering is “The Adventures of Pericles,” by William Shakespeare and George Wilkins, directed by festival founder Tom Simonetti.

The play will run in two parks - Veteran’s Memorial Park in Shelton, from July 15 to 18 at 7 p.m., and at Quarry Walk in Oxford from July 22 to 25 at 7 p.m. Shows are free with a suggested donation of $10.

Social distancing at the performances is encouraged, as is mask-wearing for those not fully vaccinated.

“We toured a production of Pericles in 2016 to libraries and fourth to eighth graders who fell in love with the play,” Simonetti said. “They applauded and responded to how wild the show was. While it is not performed a lot, it is one of the only plays that retains choruses, which in Shakespeare’s day helped to continue the play and clarify the plot. If you hate Shakespeare, this is probably the one you have to see.”

Throughout the year Valley Shakespeare Festival tour schools, farms, libraries, homeless shelters and, in normal times, the popular Shakespeare in the Bar series.

Speaking about adding the shows at Quarry Walk, Simonetti said, “This is extremely exciting to get into the Valley with this wonderful partnership. I love how Quarry Walk has a community feel among the businesses and residences.”

All actors in this run of Adventures of Pericles are members of the Actor’s Equity Association, a labor union for actors. All the parts in the show are played by five actors: Eric Bermudez, Andie Lerner, Matt Mancuso, Kendall Segovia, and Zak Risinger.

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