Prospero (Kathleen Turco-Lyon) charms Ariel (Thea Brooks) in a rehearsal of Shakespeare’s “The Tempest” at Ames Farm in Stonington. The Deer Isle Thorofare forms the backdrop for the outdoor production. OPERA HOUSE ARTS PHOTO

Opera House Arts to stage “The Tempest” outdoors



STONINGTON — Three summers ago, director Peter Richards used Ames Farm’s magnificent landscape to transport audiences to 19th-century Russia with his much praised production of “The Seagull.”

This summer, the saltwater farm and the Deer Island Thorofare is the setting for William Shakespeare’s “The Tempest.” The seaside space will be “full of noises, sounds and sweet airs that give delight and hurt not.”

Staged outdoors, Opera House Arts’ 2018 production in its Shakespeare in Stonington series will open at 5:30 p.m. Friday, June 29, at 161 Indian Point Road.

“‘The Tempest is a perfect play to stage outdoors on Deer Isle,” says Opera House Arts Interim Artistic Director Peter Richards. “Shakespeare’s rich, poetic language is full of humor, and the magnificent island landscape is sure to make the theatrical experience a magical one.”

One of Shakespeare’s last plays, “The Tempest” tells the story of Prospero, a magician exiled to a remote island, who seizes the opportunity to take revenge on the brother who wronged him. He unleashes a churning storm to shipwreck the man who stole his dukedom. But bitter revenge is upended by newfound love in this sublime comedic masterpiece that proves we are all “such stuff as dreams are made on.”

The production will travel around Ames Farm, with acting taking place in multiple locations. The early curtain time (all performances begin at 5:30 p.m.) ensures that audiences will enjoy a gorgeous Stonington sunset as the play reaches its ending, with characters finding forgiveness and friendship after the tumultuous title storm.

“The Tempest” reunites Richards with many returning cast members and designers. Actors Kathleen Turco-Lyon (last seen as Arkadina in Richards’ production of “The Seagull”), Bari Robinson, Paul Farwell, Ryan Knowles, and Marvin Merritt IV have all been featured on Opera House Arts stage in the past, and the design team, composed of Julia Sears (associate director), Robin Vest (sets), Jennifer Paar (costumes) and Mark Van Hare (sound) have all collaborated before as well.

All performances are at 5:30 p.m. on June 29-30, July 5-8, July 11-15 and Sunday, July 23. Tickets cost $25-$40 per person. To reserve seats, call 367-2788 and visit www.operahousearts.org.