Monday, July 12, 2021

 

Dear Friends,

We are beginning the work to reopen for next year - it will be a year of rebirth of our company after having been dark for two years and it will be a year of change in terms of a lot of our business-as-usual methods. We're very much looking forward to it.

So, we announce the beginning of the MSF Renaissance 2022:

we will bring back our touring company, hopefully a reading or two, and a glorious MainStage Season next summer.

We are a fully vaccinated company.
We are an anti-racist company.
We are an inclusive company.
We are a "Not In Our House" company.

We thank you for your support and we look forward to seeing you again as soon as we're able and you're amenable.  

Without you, there is no us.

 

We’ll see you soon.

 

Janice L Blixt

Producing Artistic Director

On behalf of the Board and Associates of

The Michigan Shakespeare Festival

Monday, April 12, 2021

 

Dear Friends,

With heavy hearts, we are announcing that we will not be producing our 2021 MainStage Season.  We will remain dark this summer.

Many different factors combined for this decision.  We had issues with our venues, with our usual housing, and with our unions all based on new Covid protocols and all of these factors would have made production very difficult this summer.

But our main focus is the safety and comfort of our audiences, and based on the surveys we've conducted on views of attending live theatre in the next few months, a large majority of our supporters feel uncomfortable returning so soon to indoor productions. We were so grateful to see that 99% of respondents (and we had over 550) said they are looking forward to attending live theatre again - and we understand completely the 73% of respondents who didn't feel they would attend a live indoor production before 2022.

Therefore, we have made what we feel is the responsible choice to remain dark for summer of 2021 and put our energy and focus into bringing back our wonderful MiSFITs Touring Company in winter of 2022 to again perform for high schools in Michigan, Ohio, and Indiana, and the return to MainStage glory in summer of 2022.

If you have tickets purchased for 2020 and have rolled them over to 2021, we are able to continue the rollover to 2022 - or we are able to refund the costs.  Please call the office at 517.998.3673 and leave a message with your name and a return number - or email us at GM@michiganshakespearefestival.com to let us know your preferences.

We thank you for your support and we look forward to seeing you again as soon as we're able and you're amenable.  


 

Without you, there is no us.

 

Stay safe. Stay healthy. We want to see you all on the other side of this. 

 

We’ll see you soon.

 

Janice L Blixt

Producing Artistic Director

On behalf of the Board and Associates of

The Michigan Shakespeare Festival

 

Monday, November 9, 2020

 

Thank you, EncoreMichigan and the Wilde Awards, for your appreciation of our 2019 Season - we very much appreciate you and all you do for professional theatre in Michigan.

(Due to this year's pandemic, the critics of Encore were unable, as a group, to see all of the nominated productions.  So this season, the awards are "Best of" and there are multiple winners in all categories.)

 

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Monday, July 21, 2020

 

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Saturday, May 30, 2020

 

Thursday, April 23, 2020

Dear Friends,

 

With theatres closing throughout the country, this is probably a notice you’ve been expecting.

 

Nevertheless, I regret to inform you that the Michigan Shakespeare Festival is going dark this year. We will not produce our 2020 Mainstage Season.

 

A wide variety of factors went into this decision. For one, our artist housing at Jackson College is, rightly, currently occupied by the medical staff and first responders for the hospital. We have never been more proud of our partnership with the college than we are now. 

 

But the main factor is the health and safety of our artists and our audiences. Part of the joy of theatre is that it is a community experience, a shared breath, four hundred hearts thrilling, four hundred voices laughing. But this moment, as happened during Shakespeare’s day, that very community experience is an invitation to this virus. To offer shows now would be irresponsible, and we would never put you at risk.  

 

Many of you have already purchased tickets for the upcoming season. We want to be as respectful of that investment in us as possible. Many theatre patrons across the country are turning advance ticket purchases into donations. If you are able to do that, we thank you. That donation will go towards payroll for our staff, rent for our office and off-season storage, office expenses, insurance costs – the things that don’t go away when we’re not able to produce.

 

However, with so many people suddenly not working, we understand that a donation might not be possible. If you like, we can roll your ticket over to the 2021 Season, where we know we will be producing Henry V, directed by Janice L Blixt, and The Merry Wives of Windsor directed by Robert Kauzlaric, along with a third classical show (it may or may not be Charlie’s Aunt. For 2020, we wanted some lighthearted fare during what we expected to be deep political drama. While we very well may need laughs next year, we’ll see what 2021 looks like. Mystery Show!)

 

If neither a donation nor a roll-over reservation is possible for you, we completely understand. In the next weeks we’ll have the process set up for refunds. We ask you to be patient—this is not something we’ve dealt with before.

 

In the interim, we will keep posting content to our Facebook page and Twitter account - we’re enjoying our “MSF Unplugg’d: Artists in their own Residences” series.  We have some projects in mind to offer as entertainment this summer and into the fall.  We have noted, as we’re sure you have, that during this time of trouble, people are turning to art to feed their souls and hearts. As Claudio notes in Measure For Measure, “The miserable have no other medicine, but only hope.”

                                           

When we come back—and we will come back—the world may well be different. We’d be lying if we said losing this season was not a blow, that we didn’t need your support moving forward. But that’s for the future. 

 

At the Michigan Shakespeare Festival, we care deeply about the work we do, the experiences we create, the joys of classical theatre. We care about you more. After all, without an audience, theatre is just people being silly in cool clothes in a well-designed room. 

 

Without you, there is no us.

 

Stay safe. Stay healthy. We want to see you all on the other side of this. 

 

We’ll see you soon.

 

Janice L Blixt

Producing Artistic Director

On behalf of the Board and Associates of

The Michigan Shakespeare Festival