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Shake on the Lake’s ‘Tempest’ tears through the Finger Lakes

By Colin Dabkowski

News Arts Critic

When we think about hotbeds for Shakespearean drama, Silver Lake does not immediately jump to mind.

But perhaps it should. That small village, about an hour southeast of Buffalo, is home to the Shake on the Lake Shakespeare Festival, which has been building a reputation for itself as the only professional Shakespeare company in Wyoming and Livingston counties. The festival, now in its fourth season, will open its touring production of “The Tempest” today in Geneseo. The production will then hopscotch across the region, coming closest to Buffalo for performances at 6:30 p.m. Aug. 1 at the Attica Historical Society (130 Main St.) and 6:30 p.m. Aug. 4 in the Village of Arcade Park.

The production of Shakespeare’s mystical drama is directed by the festival’s co-founder and artistic director Josh Rice, a professional puppeteer who has performed with the New York Philharmonic and at the Barbican Theatre in London. The festival’s current season owes its existence, at least in part, to Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s Finger Lakes Regional Economic Development Council, which awarded the company a grant for the first time this year.

A full list of performances is online at shakeonthelake.org. Tickets are $10.

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