‘Romeo and Juliet,’ opens June 27 for free, tickets available for ‘Bye Bye Birdie’ shows

The Pioneer Summer Theatre (PST) at Marietta College is excited to present nine performances – five of  Romeo and Juliet and four of Bye Bye Birdie – in late June and early July.

The opening performance of Romeo and Juliet is scheduled for 8:30 p.m., Thursday, June 27th, at the gazebo in East Muskingum Park on Front Street. Bye Bye Birdie opens the following night at 8:00 p.m., Friday, June 28th, at Peoples Bank Theatre, 222 Putnam St.

PST invites you to experience Shakespeare’s classic love story of Romeo and Juliet, reimagined for the Mid-Ohio Valley. Set in the year 1861 in the fictional Ohio River town of Verona, the Montagues and the Capulets find themselves divided by loyalties to family and country.

The tension between the Union Montagues and the Confederate Capulets boil over as the nation enters the brutal and bloody Civil War. While the older generation clings to the dangerous traditions of the past, the optimistic youth risk it all to create a better future. All performances start at 8:30 p.m. at the gazebo and admission is free. Other dates for Romeo and Juliet are June 29 and 30, as well as July 3 and 7.

A loving send-up of the early 1960s, small-town America, teenagers, and rock ‘n’ roll, Bye Bye Birdie remains as fresh and vibrant as ever. Teen heartthrob superstar Conrad Birdie has been drafted, so he chooses All-American girl Kim MacAfee for a very public farewell kiss … much to the dismay of her father George and her boyfriend Hugo. Will Sweet Apple, Ohio, ever be the same? Featuring the beloved songs “Put on a Happy Face,” “Kids,” and “One Last Kiss.”

Other performances for Bye Bye Birdie are scheduled for 2:00 p.m., Saturday, June 29th, and 8:00 p.m. Friday, July 5th and Saturday, July 6th. Tickets are available for $15, $20 and $25 at www.peoplesbanktheatre.com.

PST continues the tradition of professional summer stock theatre in Marietta. One dynamic company made up of local community members, college theatre artists from across the country, and professional directors and designers will present a Broadway-style musical along with a free Shakespeare production of Romeo and Juliet in Muskingum Park during the opening weekend of the Ohio Valley Shakespeare Conference.

Located in Marietta, Ohio, at the confluence of the Muskingum and Ohio rivers, Marietta College is a four-year liberal arts college. Tracing its roots to the Muskingum Academy back in 1797, the College was officially chartered in 1835. Today Marietta College serves a body of 1,200 full-time students. The College offers more than 50 majors and is consistently ranked as one of the top regional comprehensive colleges by U.S. News & World Report and The Princeton Review, as well as one of the nation’s best by Forbes.com. Marietta was selected seventh in the nation according to the Brookings Institution’s rankings of colleges by their highest value added, regardless of major.