Stand Up for Bastards

July 16, 2006

Legitimate Edgar, I must have your land.
Our father’s love is to the bastard Edmund
As to th’ legitimate. Fine word — ‘legitimate’!
Well, my legitimate, if this letter speed,
And my invention thrive, Edmund the base
Shall top th’ legitimate. I grow; I prosper.
Now, gods, stand up for bastards!

— King Lear, Act I, Scene II.

Today, in the space between the Brooklyn and Manhattan Bridges, a small audience braved the brutal heat for art’s sake. They gathered in a shady corner of Empire-Fulton Ferry State Park to watch the Boomerang Theatre Company in a free performance of Shakespeare’s King Lear.

An extraordinary moment came at Act 3, Scene II, when Lear and the Fool emerged from the shaded grove. As the king cried, “Blow, winds, and crack your cheeks! Rage! Blow!,” a strong current blew through the trees, bending the limbs with such force that a branch came crashing to the earth.

A grove of trees serves as “backstage” Posted by Picasa

Edgar draws his sword against Edmund Posted by Picasa

Edmund is mortally wounded Posted by Picasa

Kent watches as Lear cradles the dead Cordelia Posted by Picasa

  • Online Literature: King Lear
  • Boomerang Theatre Company
  • Bill Fairbairn
  • Review of Boomerang Theatre Company’s King Lear
  • Empire-Fulton Ferry State Park

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