“Two households…from ancient grudge break to new mutiny…where civil blood makes civil hands unclean” are words which set the story of star-crossed lovers in Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet. They come back to life, so close that they may touch your hands while touching your heart. This is Walk the Night’s latest immersive experience titled Death Marked Love wherein, it says, characters are doomed to walk the night until the crimes against them are purged. This unfolds under the stars at Neale Woods Nature Center.
Walk the Night, as you may recall, has already thrice offered ghostly visions of Shakespeare plays at this time of year, as if in kinship to the mysteries of Halloween. Thus it is that, once more, producer, writer, director Spencer Williams is the principal man behind the curtain, having adapted and transformed what Shakespeare created. Except that there is no curtain.
This invention unfolds in multiplicity, while, you, a witness, follow the characters or come upon them under the moon as they re-live their now-eclipsed lives. While clouds hover amid bursts of happy sunshine, you move from scene to scene of your own accord. As always, you need not know the essence of the play, the source, to understand and relate.
Ten performers cajole, josh, erupt and struggle while lives fall around them. It begins with an invitation, then, having committed to being a witness and buying a ticket at walkthenightwithme.com,, you are emailed a link with driving instructions and a downloadable audio invitation–a radio play to accompany you on a drive to Fontenelle’s Neale Woods, north of Hummel Park.
Williams has directed and adapted the play along with company members Caulene Hudson and Aaron Ellis. There is a live original soundtrack by Andrew Heringer, Philip Kolbo, and Joe Mendick with choreography TBD Dance Collective’s Stephanie Huettner.
“Some shall be pardoned and some punished for never was a story of more woe.”
Death Marked Love unfolds October 5-28. Neale Woods Nature Center, 14323 Edith Marie Avenue. Thurs.-Sun 7.p.m with double shows Fridays and Saturdays. Tickets $25 for adults & $45 for unlimited access. Discounts for students, TRUBLU members & groups of 5 or more. walkthenightwithme.com