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The reviews are in! Read what others are saying about GRSF:
…Those who find the works of William Shakespeare inaccessible are advised to hop into their cars and head south on Highway 61 this summer. Get as far as the river town of Winona and Great River Shakespeare Festival will take you by the hand and lead you unambiguously and enjoyably through “The Merry Wives of Windsor…”
…After watching the ingenious and moving confection on stage during the opening weekend of Winona’s Great River Shakespeare Festival — with Milwaukee Repertory Theater regular Jonathan Gillard Daly playing the fat man — I’m prepared to tell all the naysayers to stuff it…
…The show was wonderful. Each actor did a fabulous job. There were many returning actors and some new faces on stage! I look forward to seeing the other shows GRSF has to offer this year!
…Shifting Shakespeare out of the 16th century and into more modern times doesn’t always work as well as it was imagined in the planning sessions. In this case, though, the festival’s “Merry Wives” holds together, in large part because the styling, the acting, the music and the design are so consistently excellent.
…Like Waiting for Godot, R&G does bring out some heavy philosophical questions. Are we just characters in someone else’s play? Do we really make a difference? What would happen if we weren’t here?….However, those are questions to be pondered after you see the play, which I highly recommend. Great production, everyone.
…what makes this production perplexing is the same thing that makes it so much fun: Barnes and other Great River artistic leaders have for the past decade preached a gospel of “text-based” Shakespeare. Language drives the show, not director concepts and tricks.
…They, and the emotions that they evoke, are what make this role different from the many others that Carlson has tackled, both as an actor with GRSF and in other projects.
If you’re anywhere near Winona, Minnesota—by which I mean within a roughly three hundred mile radius—it is completely worth heading to The Great River Shakespeare Festival. Go there. Go there now.