Bonner County Daily Bee – BCDB Nav, Shakespeare in Sandpoint

Free performance features troupe from Montana Shakespeare in the Parks

By DAVID GUNTER

Feature correspondent

SANDPOINT — Shakespeare in Sandpoint was never meant to be a one-time event, which makes the triumphal local return of the bard for the third year in a row something worth celebrating. On Aug. 20, the actors from Montana Shakespeare in the Parks will bring a taste of the Globe Theater to the Bonner County Fairgrounds when they perform Shakespeare’s “Macbeth.”

When the group pulled up stakes in nearby Heron, Mont., after a multi-year run there, Lost Horse Press founder Christine Holbert pounced on the chance to bring the troupe to Sandpoint. It was, she explained, an ideal way to help fulfill the publishing company’s mission to “make literature available through cultural, educational and public programs.”

“They ran every year in Heron, so my plan was always to have it be an ongoing event here,” Holbert said. “This is a way to get literature to people in a different format. Sometimes, that makes them like it more.”

Holbert and a core group of volunteers hosts the traveling acting troupe each year, putting them up in spare bedrooms and providing home-cooked meals while they’re in town. Sandpoint has become one of the group’s favorite venues in its summer-long tour, since they feel fairly spoiled for the short time they’re in town.

“They work hard and they do everything,” said Holbert, pointing out that the 10-member cast doubles as stage crew before and after each lengthy performance. “It’s like the circus coming to town. The actors spend three hours setting up the stage and two hours breaking it down – with a play in the middle.”

The seasoned pros who mount these shows make her job relatively easy, according to Holbert.

“I’m pretty accustomed to putting on big events,” she said. “But the Montana Shakespeare in the Parks people are so experienced that it’s not that…

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