New York has many things to offer, especially in the summer. The only question involved is where and how. The simplest answer is google.. I reference google often, but honestly it’s probably the best tool we’ve ever been given as a society. There are millions of things we want to know or learn and can now see how to, just by inputting our interest into a search. Anywho in my search I’ve come across Shakespeare in the Park many times, and a friend finally put the bug in my back to go. What Shakespeare in the Park does is give people the opportunity to see a classic Shakespeare play in Central Park for free. You have 4 options in receiving tickets
- Standing in line at the Delacorte. This is where the actual play is held. The day of the play they release tickets there starting at 12pm. People begin lining up as early as 7am, and they do run out, so get there early.
- Being a Lottery pick, There are multiple ways to enter the lottery. You could either enter online and hope to be picked or in person and hope to be picked. This is a good choice if you don’t particularly care if you see it or not. The chances you’ll get picked are really in the air.
- Through Borough Distribution. On different days of performances different sites throughout the 5 boroughs will have tickets that you can also pick up. This is a much safer bet, there will be less of a line for the tickets so the chances of you receiving the tickets are much greater.
- Standby Tickets. This is what I did, and depending on the day of performance and which play it is this can be tricky. The standby line starts anytime the first person stands in it, which can be anytime from 12pm after the tickets sell out all the way till 7:30pm when the doors open for the play. Me particularly got to the line around 5pm, and sat there for 2 hours till they distributed them. Another woman in line said she’s done stand-by twice before and has always gotten a ticket… I think this is the best route to go if you don’t feel like going super early or traveling out of your way (but be on this line early).
- Pay. I mean it’s a guarantee BUTTT the lowest amount you can “donate” is $200.. I think that’s great.. for people with money.. but for a free event and for someone without $200 to spare this isn’t my kind of option.
So with the Stand-by line, you never know which tickets you may get because you’re getting the left over tickets. The ones people didn’t collect, the one’s they put to the side, very random. For example we had amazing seats in the second row, while the woman behind us had tickets on the second tier. They don’t allow any photography after the play starts, its a 3hour play, with a 15minute intermission in the middle of it. The stage is very close to you, minimal and intimate. I loved the setting and how they made the space work.
The food and refreshments there are a bit highly priced, but nothing more than you’d expect in the middle of Central Park. There are small snacks like chips from $3-$4, hotdogs, salads, and sandwhiches from $6-$10, and beers, sangria, and wine for I think $6-$12.
But the good thing is, you can bring in outside food and drinks. Online they state you can bring in bottles as long as it’s not glass, but they didn’t even check our bags. To be on the safe side though we got these amazingly clutch to-go wine cartons that hold 17ozes of wine, and only cost around $6 from the local liquor and wine store. .
Not that I doubted the quality the play would have been, but it surpassed my expectations.
I’m pretty familiar with Shakespearean plays, but I had never read or seenTroilus and Cressida and was skeptical if I would like it or even be willing to want to follow along with the language. My first thought was like okay, a 2 hour wait, and a 3 hour play that starts at 8pm.. there’s no way I’ll be staying the whole time.
But after the first half, although I was tired, I was extremely intrigued not only in the story but compelled to see it through. It was definitely an experience I’m glad I got to have and something I’d recommend to every New Yorker and every visitor.