Grabbing a blanket or lawn chair and heading to Centennial Park to watch one of Shakespeare’s original plays adapted into Music City’s style is a favorite past time for Nashville natives as well as tourists. In recent years, the Festival has infused country music of the 1930s into the setting for As You Like It, and 1940s swing in a production of Much Ado About Nothing. The Nashville Shakespeare Festival brought its own twist on Shakespeare’s A Comedy of Errors to the 2017’s Shakespeare in the Park series at Centennial Park in Nashville, Tennessee. NSF’s production of A Comedy of Errors received high marks from audiences and local critics, including The Tennessean, The Nashville Scene, and Nashville Arts magazine.
In an article in The Tennessean, some of the actors noted that seeing the Shakespeare performance “adds important layers to understanding it” and that it is more relatable to people nowadays than they might think. Since this year’s production included various teachers from schools in Nashville, they themselves said that the play offers a perfect introduction to Shakespeare for students, especially those in middle and high school. Since Shakespeare In The Park is a free experience, it attracts a large audience every weekend that it is available.
In terms of the adaption ofA Comedy of Errors, the overall verdict on it by local reviewers was that the “Music City” feel to it was intriguing, entertaining, and artistic. One spectator quoted in The Tennessean review said, “I remember thinking that was such an interesting pairing—musical magic that could only happen in Nashville…using country music to tell such a fun, lighthearted story just seemed like a perfect fit.” One of the production’s favorite scenes was the final number of the show, which was described as one of the most exciting parts of the entire play. NSF’s adaptation of A Comedy of Errors is described as the “shortest and zaniest” of shows by the Nashville Arts magazine. Likewise, the Nashville Scene found it to be a fun and engaging evening of theater.