Up & Coming Weekly

May 31, 2022

Up and Coming Weekly is a weekly publication in Fayetteville, NC and Fort Bragg, NC area offering local news, views, arts, entertainment and community event and business information.

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Page 17 of 28

WWW.UPANDCOMINGWEEKLY.COM JUNE 1 - 7, 2022 UCW 17 EVENT Much Ado about Shakespeare by ASHLEY SHIRLEY Sweet Tea Shakespeare will take audiences all the way back to "the rom-com that started it all" with their production of "Much Ado About Nothing" by William Shakespeare. is comedy, directed by Sweet Tea Shakespeare's Artistic Director Jeremy Fiebig, will open Friday, June 3, and run through June 26. Shows start at 7:30 p.m. Friday through Sunday, with a live music preshow at 6:45 p.m. Written around 1598, "Much Ado About Nothing" focuses on the ro- mantic exploits of two couples in the idyllic Italian countryside. Beatrice and Benedick are cynical individuals more interested in exchanging witty repartee than vows of love. A second romance in the story follows the maid- en, Hero, and brave soldier, Claudio. A colorful cast of characters both aid and usurp the four would-be lovers, and hilarity ensues. "I think this play is just wildly entertaining," said Jen Pommerenke, managing director for Sweet Tea Shakespeare. "It lends itself to any age group, and it's an accessible Shake- speare comedy. It's funny, witty and just a great storyline." e play will receive a few updates — moving to the "Bridgerton" esque Empire period with some infusions of modern music. e source material has been cut down to fit a run time of around two hours. However, it's still "all Shakespeare," Fiebig assured Up & Coming Weekly. Sweet Tea Shakespeare brings e Bard and the magic of his stories to old fans and newcomers alike. Over 500 years after changing the way humans engage with story craft, Sweet Tea Shakespeare believes Shakespeare is still extremely relevant today. "I think Shakespeare gets humans," explained Pommerenke. "He under- stands our tenacious spirit and our desire for love. You can take Shake- speare and drop the story just about anywhere. We've seen Shakespeare take place in Georgia, seen it in army fatigues, and I'm sure there's one with robots," she joked. "ere's a Shake- speare for everyone." "We are all Shakespeare in a sense," said Fiebig, adding to the sentiment. "So much of [his] writing has become, over time, how we see and experi- ence the world — how we laugh, how we fall in love, even how we think. Shakespeare has a really robust way of sticking with us — I think because there's such a depth to the ideas in the plays." While some may be intimidated by the idea of Shakespeare and the language of the play, Fiebig feels con- fident no one in the audience will be left behind. "At Sweet Tea Shakespeare, we work to make the Shakespeare as accessible as possible, and audiences will be able to follow along. We provide them some extra help on-site, too." Pommerenke suggested the pay-off is worth it. "I think it's really good for people to be challenged by stories. You do have to pay attention to a Shakespeare play; you have to engage the head and heart; you can't go in and zone out — and it just sounds so lovely on the ears." Sweet Tea Shakespeare strives to create a holistic experience for its audience that speaks to the mind and the celebratory spirit of theater. "e main difference at Sweet Tea Shakespeare is that the play is part of a larger event," said Fiebig. "We have a preshow with music and other fun entertainment, beer, wine and a spe- cialty cocktail just for the show. Our productions fold in modern music. We like to think of our work as a party where a play breaks out." e company travels with its own playhouse set-up, and the play will be performed outdoors when weather permits. Attendees are encouraged to bring camping chairs, quilts or blan- kets to spread on the ground. Light fare will be for sale from local vendors. General admission tickets are $22 in advance, and day-of tickets will cost $30. Tickets can be purchased on the website, https://sweetteashakespeare. com/tickets/, by calling 910-420-4383 or email tickets@sweetteashake- speare.com. Information regarding performance locations can be found at https:// sweetteashakespeare.com/much-ado- sweet-tea-shakespeare-rom-com/. ASHLEY SHIRLEY, Staff Writer. COMMENTS? Editor@upandcomin- gweekly.com. 910-484-6200 A performance by Sweet Tea Shakespeare. (Photo courtesy of Sweet Tea Shakespeare) Owned & Operated by TWO BROTHERS Catering I n t i m on y a t T h e V i n e P riva te • R o m a n tic • A f f o rd ab le C u st o m C a teri n g by T w o B r o t h ers Intimony at THE VINE Event Venue Wedding Packages Meeting & Party Facilities CALL 910-584-9892 to host your event CALL 910-584-9892 eVineNC.com or TwoBrothersCateringNC.com 806 Katie Street Fayetteville NC (Of f Owen Drive behind O-Reilly's) M areena & J a m es Life is anything but expected We provide benets that your employees want for those unexpected moments in life, whether that's an accident, illness or injury. Colonial Life. Keep Unexpecting® Insurance products are underwritten by Colonial Life & Accident Insurance Company, Columbia, SC. Ⓒ2020 Colonial Life & Accident Insurance Company. All rights reserved. Colonial Life is a registered trademark and marketing brand of Colonial life & Accident Insurance Company. 8-20 | NS-369880 Injury | Illness | Dental | Vision | Life steven.grimes@coloniallifesales.com 910-916-7191 That's why we're here.

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