The romance of “Romeo and Juliet” not only will come to life on stage when Iowa Shakespeare Experience (ISE) presents the play July 18 and 20-21 but will continue beyond the stage as well. Janae Hohbein and Nick Toussaint, who will portray the star-crossed lovers, are involved in a real-life romantic relationship, too, “a fact (that was) entirely unknown to us when we cast, so our casting seems like true kismet,” says Robin Heinemann, ISE’s executive director. “And yes, we expect some amazing sizzle to show up on stage.” Of course, we trust the couple won’t face a similar destiny as Juliet Capulet and Romeo Montague—after all, we all know what happened to them.
See how Shakespeare’s famous story unfolds at Simon Estes Amphitheater. Gates open at 6 p.m. for picnicking and a pre-show concert, with the play beginning at 8 p.m. Admission is free. The festival will go on rain or shine; there are nightly indoor rain sites as well of a rain date of July 23. Details: IowaShakespeare.org