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A 60-Second Look At How Quickly This Shakespeare Stage Goes Up


For nearly a decade now, I’ve been enraptured by Shakespeare by the Sea, a San Pedro-based group that performs outdoors during the summer. Its home outdoor stage is at Pt. Fermin Park, on a bluff above the ocean, but the bulk of the company’s performances—27 of the 31 performances this month and next—are on the road.

Last weekend it was Manhattan Beach, and that’s the venue my wife and I like the most. We invite friends, enjoy the late afternoon and evening in Polliwog Park, have a big picnic dinner, and generally soak in the culture with the cool ocean breezes.

Many things amaze me about the Shakespeare by the Sea company—the quality of the productions, the innovative and fun-loving approach to material that’s more than 400 years old, and the relaxing nature of outdoor theater—but there’s nothing quite like the way the production gets put together. In just over an hour, a stage, lighting, and a sound system are erected on a spot that was bare cement. (It comes down even faster!) This year, I captured this minor miracle—about 2,100 digital images snapped over a period of roughly 90 minutes, and then compressed to under a minute.

{ 5 comments… add one }
  • Jaazee July 22, 2011, 5:14 pm

    Love this, thanks for sharing.

  • Annie July 23, 2011, 3:06 pm

    What a thoughtful thing for you to do so that even, we, in Placerville, can enjoy it…thanks.

  • Bryan Frank July 28, 2011, 7:54 pm


  • OG July 29, 2011, 1:12 am

    This came out great, Paul! I know you’ve been looking forward to this project for a while and I’m glad you were able to complete it! You may find this post on time-lapse photography interesting. http://bit.ly/kmi4bQ

  • Lisa Coffi April 1, 2022, 6:56 pm

    would love to re-post this video on our social media as part of our 25th Anniversary retrospective campaign. Possible to make this video public again? and/or repost on YouTube?

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