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Central Coast Living: Bring blankets & a picnic to watch theater outside

Posted at 8:20 AM, Jul 11, 2019
and last updated 2019-07-11 11:20:23-04

For three weeks this summer, local actors are showing the Central Coast that going to the theater doesn’t have to be fancy.

At Filipponi Ranch in San Luis Obispo, the winery’s property becomes a makeshift theater as host to the Central Coast Shakespeare Festival.

Chelsea Garcia is a veteran performer of the festival.

“There’s just nothing like outside theater. It’s so beautiful because all of the elements are involved in it,” Garcia said. “You see the sunset go down and then the night stars come out and you get to grab a bottle of wine which the winery there offers, as well as local food vendors.”

This year, the actors will perform Shakespeare’s “Twelfth Night” and a non-Shakespearean play but a classic, “Treasure Island.”

Dylan Krebs plays Isreal Hands in “Treasure Island.”

“It is truly an ensemble piece and I get to experiment with all these different choices on stage like moment-to-moment, so that’s always exciting for me as an actor,” Krebs said.

Audiences are asked to bring lawn chairs, plenty of blankets and a picnic to enjoy during the show.

The actors especially love to see kids in the audience.

“It’s so important for the kids to experience the arts and not many places do Shakespeare as much as they should and it’s just such a beautiful art form,” Garcia said. “‘Treasure Island’ is such a fun show because we really get the audience involved in this one.”

Actor Mark Klassen says not to be surprised if the actors step off the stage and over to you.

“We break the fourth wall several times,” Klassen said. “Where else can you experience bringing your own chair or your own picnic, going out under the stars watching some characters come to life on a stage.”

The festival kicks off Thursday with a performance of “Twelfth Night” at 7:30 p.m. The last performance will be on August 3.

Filipponi Ranch is located at the top of Calle Joaquin in San Luis Obispo, nearby KSBY News.

Tickets can be purchased online at the festival’s website. There, you will also find a list of showtimes and festival information.