Bard on Beacon sees success in its first year

Organizer hopes to continue theatre performances through fall

Bard on Beacon was a success and organizers are looking forward to planning shows for next summer.

Sidney’s latest venture into theatre proved to be a success as the organizer of Bard on Beacon has expressed interest in continuing productions through the fall.

Steve Duck, owner of TIDES Group who produced Sidney Shakespeare by the Sea, said the indoor and outdoor performances of A Midsummer Night’s Dream and Romeo and Juliet over Sept. 6, 7 and 8 were well received by audiences. Performers came to Sidney for the weekend of shows from Victoria Shakespeare by the Sea and Discovery Dance Theatre.

“We had 60-plus audience members attend every performance so we saw some good numbers turn out,” he said, adding the seaside location in Beacon Park and the cast interacting with audience members really added to the shows.

“Everyone that came and saw seemed to be really impressed. It was really refreshing to see how thrilled people were with this type of event even though it was a first time thing for Sidney.”

The event also raised $1,000 to support local charities like the Mary Winspear Centre Children’s Art and Music Fund, Team 4 Hope, and Tour de Rock.

Duck pitched the idea of Sidney Shakespeare by the Sea and Bard on Beacon to the Town of Sidney early last summer but time constraints and bylaws which forbid events requiring tickets in Beacon Park put the idea on hold until this year when bylaws were revised.

Now, Duck said, he’s looking forward to planning something Shakespeare-esque for the winter months as well.

“I’m hoping to do Macbeth in late January at the Charlie White Theatre in the Mary Winspear Centre as well as do Macbeth outdoors in the summer along with a Shakespearian comedy,” he explained.

But for now, Duck is enjoying the afterglow of the successful first Shakespeare by the Sea event.

“I really have to give credit to the Town of Sidney for taking the chance and allowing this event in Beacon Park,” he said.

“I’m definitely looking forward to doing it again.”