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Time to get cozy at Shakespeare fest

Don't worry about cool weather, bundle up and come on down, organizer says
Cast members work on a scene from A Comedy of Errors at Camosun College’s Lansdowne campus. Cool weather so far has hurt attendance at the outdoor Victoria Shakespeare Festival.

It’s been rather a perfect storm of calamity for the Victoria Shakespeare Festival.

The outdoor event, plagued by cool evening weather and reduced provincial funding, is making a plea for the public to support its unique brand of theatre, lest the festival be turned to dust.

With the event relying on box office receipts to keep it going these days and audiences about half of what they were in recent years, organizers are trying a few things to get more people out to Camosun College’s Lansdowne campus.

Roughly 400 pass holders who bought $10 vouchers for early showings of Hamlet and A Comedy of Errors haven’t shown up, said festival artistic director Michael Glover. To entice those people, the vouchers are being accepted as a full-price ticket for the remaining 16 shows, he said.

“We don’t ever want to sell a ticket where people feel it’s been wasted.”

Plenty of blankets and cushions are available at the venue. “Bring a sleeping bag, you’ll be nice and cosy,” Glover said. “What a date night.”

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