What the critics say

“Some people, it seems, are born to do Shakespeare, and so must it be for (Artistic Director) Terry Burgler… Under his guidance, a dazzling cast makes Shakespeare as easily enjoyable as if the play had been written last year by someone in, well, Ohio. The company makes one understand why so many make a fuss about dear old Will. It's also gorgeous to the eye.” (The Cleveland Scene)

“Burgler and his band of actors perform Shakespeare for the sheer joy of it. We audience members are fortunate to partake in such a gorgeous treat.” (Akron Beacon Journal)

“The Ohio Shakespeare Festival’s performances at Stan Hywet have been a win-win experience for everyone. The festival has an exciting place to perform, and some people visited Stan Hywet for the first time for these plays.” (David Ritchey, West Side Leader) 

“Employing a lot of eye contact with the audience, an OSF trademark, the players coax even the most reluctant audience members into the Shakespearian fold. And they are held there by the company’s insistence on crafting even the smallest characters with detail.” (Christine Howey, Rave and Pan)

“Each OSF outing is a marvel of clarity and precision, rendering even the most obtuse digressions by Will suddenly comprehensible. The result is a kind of euphoric time travel in which one feels transported back 400 years to the Globe Theatre, relishing all of the bard’s words with immediate glee just as his audiences did then.” (Kerry Clawson, Akron Beacon Journal)

“Beautifully staged . . . ethereal and sepulchral tragedy.” (Akron Beacon Journal)

“If you have never experienced Shakespeare as done by OSF, you need to treat yourself to this production. It’s a classic play, executed with style in a lovely outdoor setting.” (Rave and Pan)

“The most unique part of the production is the work of director/actor Terry Burgler, who takes the role of the Chorus. As the Chorus, he plays several parts in the play but is most memorable in the large supporting role of the Nurse... This is Burgler at his best and doing something we’ve not seen him do on the stage since I’ve been writing about his work.” (David Ritchey, West Side Leader)

“If you have ever wished that a Shakespeare production could somehow be outfitted with annotations and footnotes to help you understand what’s going on at every moment, there’s a much easier and more enjoyable alternative. Just sit in the audience while the Ohio Shakespeare Festival is performing.” (Christine Howey, Rave and Pan)

"Shakespeare shines through at Stan Hywet: Impressive troupe delivers The Two Gentlemen of Verona with delight at outdoor show.” (Akron Beacon Journal)

“This is an evening well spent on the Stan Hywet grounds. Of course, a bullfrog on his lily pad occasionally croaks to punctuate the action on the stage. But I’m sure Verona and the Globe Theatre had rude frogs, too.” (David Ritchey, West Side Leader)

“As You Like It is the most recent example of OSF magic... The outdoor lagoon setting on the Stan Hywet estate is the perfect setting for love in the woods, making this As You Like It a play you simply must experience." (Christine Howey, Rave and Pan)

“Soft white light bathes the seemingly lifeless body of Juliet and the despairing lover who clings to her in the beautifully staged final scene of Ohio Shakespeare Festival's production of Romeo and Juliet. This gorgeous aura of candlelight is both ethereal and sepulchral in the tragedy's famed double suicide in the Capulet crypt. Andrew Cruse and Tess Burgler are well-matched as star-crossed lovers Romeo and Juliet in the outdoor performance at Stan Hywet Hall & Gardens... Eric Lualdi is extraordinarily vibrant as the rowdy jokester Mercutio, Romeo's friend, ever bawdy and relentlessly teasing.” (Kerry Clawson, Akron Beacon Journal)

“Our granddaughter thought this was better than anything she saw in London during her whole spring semester there.” (Departing Patron)

“It’s the superb casting that makes this such a successful “Romeo and Juliet.” OSF has managed to cast some of the best local actors to play supporting roles. (Yes, I know there are no small roles.) Any Akron production that has a cast including Ron Cuirle, Tom Stephan, Karen Wood, Timothy Champion, Holly Humes, David McNees, Henry Bishop and Richard Figge demands the attention of those who enjoy good acting.” (David Ritchey, West Side Leader)

“Performed in counterpoint to the rumbling croaks from bullfrogs in the Stan Hywet lagoon, the performance bears all the marks of a Terry Burgler-directed show: Clarity of character, precision of speech, and an absolute commitment to making this musical language come alive for everyone in the audience.” (Christine Howey, Cleveland Scene Magazine)

“I recently saw your production of Hamlet at Stan Hywet, and I have to tell you, it was one of the best I've seen. I am a teacher and drama director at Norton High School and I'd like to help spread the word about your productions.” (Tricia Pletcher, Educator)

“As I left the performance, I overheard a man say he had never read or seen 'Hamlet' until now. His parents and his teachers let him down. This quality production deserves the attention of students, teachers and families.” (David Ritchey, West Side Leader)

“We so much enjoyed the play, Hamlet. It was well done. Enjoyed the old English language and all the characters did a great job with it. The play was very dramatic and enjoyed the characters really getting into their part. It was a very enjoyable evening!” (Trinity Walder, 4th grade, Susie & Evan Walder, 9th grade)

“I really enjoyed this. I was shocked how many people died. The gravediggers were awesome. I would like to go again.” (Tanya Logan, Milton Shamrocks 4-H Club)

“We’re fortunate to have the OSF performing at Stan Hywet Hall & Gardens.” (West Side Leader)

“This is for many of us a once-in-a-lifetime production. I’ve not seen a staged production of 'King Lear' in my life. This is an excellent production.”  (West Side Leader)

“Once again, director Terry Burgler shows why he is a master at mounting Shakespeare's works, filling the stage with lively characterizations and an irrepressible sense of fun.” Cleveland Scene

“OSF’s 'The Taming of the Shrew' makes for a ridiculously fine night of comedy at Stan Hywet’s lagoon.” Akron Beacon Journal

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