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All the Yard's a Stage

At the Illinois Shakespeare Festival in Bloomington, Shakespeare's verse can transport listeners to distant places and a different time.

The sprawling Norman-style house was finished in 1929 by Hazle Buck Ewing, daughter of an early partner of chewing-gum magnate William Wrigley Jr.

Bequeathed to Illinois State University forty years later with the stipulation that it be used as a cultural center, the manor seemed a natural site for the Bard's plays. In 1978, the university put on the first Shakespeare production here. The completion of a new theatre on the grounds in 2000 gave the Festival a top-notch venue for its highly respected company of actors.

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Visit other Illinois theater companies: Sullivan's Little Theatre on the Square,the Music Theatre Workshop, and Albany Park Theater Project's Laura Wiley.

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Find out about some of the innovative approaches that have won the Illinois Shakespeare Festival popular and critical acclaim.

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What's so special about the Illinois Shakespeare Festival?

 

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Hamlet ponders Yorick's skull in a production of Hamlet.

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The grand grounds of Ewing Manor.

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Illinois Shakespeare Festival actors in a production of Two Gentlemen of Verona.

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A scene from Shakespeare's MacBeth.

 

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