Shakespeare troupe comes to Copper Culture

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Seven-member ensemble brings the bard to Oconto state park Saturday

A stripped-down version of “Twelfth Night” and a 45-minute educational workshop about William Shakespeare highlight the Summit Players Theatre’s visit to Copper Culture State Park in Oconto on Saturday evening.

Wisconsin’s only traveling free Shakespeare in the state parks troupe, now in its fourth season, will present the family-friendly workshop “Playing with Shakespeare: Get Outside with Will” at 5:30 p.m. and the performance at 7 p.m.

The group’s goal is to bring arts and culture to underserved communities, highlight Wisconsin’s abundant natural resources and prove that Shakespeare can be fun, said company founder Hannah Klapperich-Mueller, a 2015 graduate of Marquette University.

“Whether it’s your first Shakespeare show or you’re a total pro, there’s something in it for everyone,” she said.

The Copper Culture State Park appearance is one of 17 visits to state parks between June 23 and Aug. 12, the troupe’s longest itinerary to date. The tour is made possible in collaboration with the state Department of Natural Resources.

Klapperich-Mueller, an avid camper, was inspired to embark on the project in 2014 after noticing how many Wisconsin state parks were equipped with fully functional but under-used amphitheaters and performance spaces.

This is the first year the seven-member troupe is visiting Oconto County.