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story.lead_photo.caption Queen Hermione, played by Paige Reynolds, UCA professor, enjoys a tender moment with her son, Mamillius, played by Aidan Eslinger of Conway, in this rehearsal scene from the play performed by the Arkansas Shakespeare Theatre at the University of Central Arkansas in Conway. ( Mark Buffalo )

The Arkansas Shakespeare Theatre is canceling its 2020 season based on a decision by the University of Central Arkansas in Conway, where the summer festival is based, and based on forecasts projecting the infection rates for the covid-19 pandemic may not reach peak levels until mid-June.

Rehearsals would have started in mid-May. “Canceling our summer productions is the responsible choice for the health and safety of our community,” said Producing Artistic Director Rebekah Scallet.

“‘Sweet are the uses of adversity’ was our planned theme for this summer, and Shakespeare’s words feel particularly relevant as we navigate these uncertain times.”

Scallet said she expects the summer festival to return in 2021.

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