image-hippy shakespeare
The upcoming production of "As You Like It" will look familiar to anyone who remembers the Summer of Love in San Francisco. Photo courtesy Half Moon Bay Shakespeare Co.

Have you ever wondered how a Shakespeare play would look like if it were set in San Francisco during the Summer of Love?

That’s how the Half Moon Bay Shakespeare Co. is planning to perform “As You Like It,” a Shakespearian comedy directed by Robert Pickett that will take place at John L. Carter Park in Half Moon Bay. Evening shows are scheduled at 7 p.m. Aug. 16-18, 23-25, 30, 31 and Sept. 6 and 7. The matinees will be at 2 p.m. on Sept. 1, 2, and 8. There will be a special two-for-one ticket deal available only on opening weekend. 

The company’s annual production is set to have music and dancing from the 1960s, with choreography by Hayley Thirlwall, costumes by Lisa Claybaugh, musical direction by Louis Lagalante, and lighting design by Steven Forth. 

Pickett has been working with the Shakespeare company for nine years, and said the play is about escaping the craziness of civilization and a return to the natural world. The company tends to adapt and modernize the script to make it more accessible, and this year is no different. Pickett says this is possibly the most modern setting they’ve done.

“I was raised in the ’60s, and, for me, it seemed like the themes of the play adapted themselves really well to the Summer of Love, and what was going on at that time.”

Now in its eighth season, Half Moon Bay Shakespeare Co. actors began rehearsals on July 7. They have a diverse background. 

The company recommends bringing a blanket and beach or lawn chair to the performance. The company also recommends dressing warmly in the evenings and to prepare for full sun during the matinees. 

Tickets are available online at, at $25 for adults, $20 for seniors and students. Children 12 and under are free. Tickets are also available at Coastside Books on Main Street and at the box office one hour prior to show time.

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