‘Simpsons’ Musical Crashes This Year’s HV Shakespeare Festival
Fans of The Simpsons may want to consider checking out this year's Shakespeare Festival.
When you think of Shakespeare images of Homer and Marge Simpson don't usually come to mind. However, this year's Hudson Valley Shakespeare Festival is giving bringing the dysfunctional cartoon family to life in an evocative musical production.
Mr. Burns, A Post-Electric Play is set in a future where the power grid has failed and society is on the brink of destruction. Because there are no more streaming services, DVD players or computer hard drives, a group of survivors pass the time by recanting their favorite episodes around the fire.
While trying to remember their favorite Simpsons episode, the group of survivors realize that they don't necessarily remember all of the details. The show flashes forward to seven years later when the group has formed their own performance troupe that is putting on a play-within-the-play of The Simpsons. The actors do their best to remember details of the beloved show and task audience members with helping them recall actual punchlines and jokes.
Eventually, the musical production progresses 75 years to a time when this mangled memory of the Simpson's episode has eventually evolved into an epic opera. Mr. Burns, A Post-Electric Play is meant to show how pop culture can evolve into mythology and highbrow art. This is a great metaphor for Shakespeare himself, whose plays were essentially the sitcom of his day.
In this context, the play is a perfect addition to the Hudson Valley Shakespeare Festival. The bard originally targeted his plays at ordinary folk looking to be entertained. Today, like The Simpsons in this innovative musical, Shakespeare is touted as "high-brow" entertainment.
Mr. Burns, A Post-Electric Play will run through September 17. Tickets are available on the Hudson Valley Shakespeare Festival's website.