Hello, friends of PAE!

It’s time we welcome you once again to a summer of tragedy, love, comedy, and adventure in the beautiful outdoor spaces of the Pacific Northwest. This year we present our 50th season of free classical theater in the Portland Area.

We are thrilled to invite you to join us, again, in the lovely, gloomy, and mysterious Lone Fir Cemetery for 16 performances of King Lear, directed by Patrick Walsh (Troilus and Cressida, Taming of the Shrew). Jim Butterfield, last seen with PAE in Troilus and Cressida, embodies our favorite flawed Shakespearean king and takes him on a journey of power, struggle, and, possibly, enlightenment in one of the Bard’s most beloved works. You’ll find themes of control and weakness, of place and displacement, of cruelty and of compassion which might just resonate with the times in which we find ourselves. And, above all, if you love theater like I do, this show is good! Dress rehearsals don’t lie. 

We are happy to announce that we have a new food vendor this year! Etc eatery, from the John’s Landing area of Portland, will be serving food and (non-alcoholic) beverages at Lone Fir, and soon will be taking pre-orders. Julia and Cheryl have a restaurant and catering business and they serve up some tasty bites.  Look for another post from us when we get their updates, photos, menu items, and a pre-order link. For this coming weekend, feel free to call them to find out what they have in store and for pre-orders.

Please join us for the soft opening of King Lear, Thursday July 11th, or our official opening on Friday, July 12th. Lear runs July 11th through August 4th, all shows at 7PM @Lone Fir Cemetery.

Simultaneous with our last weekend or Lear, we will open As You Like It in the Willamette Valley at Stoller Family Estate on August 2nd.  Stoller, who has been the opening venue for our partner, Willamette Shakespeare’s, entire history, welcomes us for their 11th year of free Shakespeare at the Vineyard.  This lovely rustic location, in the vineyards and set apart from the tasting room, is the perfect setting for opening As You Like It, a rollicking romantic comedy, replete with our favorite Shakespearean comedic devices – mistaken identities, love triangles, and gender non-conformity. See what I did there?  . . . more of what we might be experiencing in these modern times. Add to that urban versus rural settings, classism, and gender inequality (vocabulary builder – primogeniture), and you have some good fun poking at societal and economic norms. 

Each venue at which we perform As You Like It has its unique charms; we invite you to attend many of them. This year we add a new venue, Mad Violets Wine Co. in Newberg, while returning to Stoller, Montinore, Backstay Wine Co’s event on Hayden Island and, last, but never least, Reed College’s expansive front lawn.  Please see our calendar for specific times and places. As You Like It closes on September 2nd, Labor Day.

Stay tuned for more updates as we progress through our exciting 50th season.  As always, all performances entirely free! Donations will be gratefully accepted.

The play’s the thing . . . since 1970!