Four years ago the AUSA Outdoor Shakespeare Trust was formed. As a board, we realised that the Trust needed an infrastructure that could support the endeavor of the participants, and allow for both proper financial management of productions and building resources. Over the past two years we've put that structure in place, and we are thrilled to be able to present this mighty play to you this evening.
Our aim is to bring the experience of Outdoor Shakespeare at the University of Auckland back into public focus, reminding the good people of the city that there is a single and rare experience to be had in the heart of the University of Auckland every year towards the end of summer.
More than simply Shakespeare in an outdoor setting, I believe this event is a unique community experience for participants and audience alike. It is an event that provides skills and experience to students, staff, actors, designers, technicians, composers and people of all ages and all walks of life interested in theatre, Shakespeare and the communication of ideas. It is an event that brings a community of people together to encounter something beyond the everyday, and it has the power to enrich and transform any audience lucky enough to witness it.
In presenting King Lear we not only look back at 50 years of productions, we also look forward to the next 50 years. In this age of technical superabundance, we must take care to preserve those things that speak directly to our collective spirit, or we run the risk of being diminished, becoming more and more incapable of coming to grips with what it means to be human, to stand in the face of eternity and yet be confined within the globe of our undestanding.
We are all in this together.
Michael Hurst, O.N.Z.M
Chair--AUSA Outdoor Shakespeare Truest
New Zealand Arts Laureate