The Michael Chekhov Theatre Festival Board traditionally holds a summer picnic to help raise funds for the fall festival. This year’s event was held on Sunday, Aug. 27, at The Market at Union Hall (just over the state line in North Salem, N.Y.) recently opened by Ridgefield residents Jeffery Albanesi and Daniel Pereira.

A group of Chekhov supporters gathered around a set picnic table and toasted to the upcoming theatre festival. 

The picnickers included residents Jennifer Dineen, artist Suzanne Benton, Valerie Swenson, and Albanesi. The Market at Union Hall serves local, organic farm produce, food, desserts and coffee.

Located in horse country, it is a perfect setting for a picnic.

Also in attendance was Jonathan Winn, of Ridgefield’s new theatre company Thrown Stone, his wife Amanda, Stephanie Trolle of Danbury and Michael Schoenberg of Redding. The meal was served and prepared by Chekhov board members Abby Walker and Marisa Del Monaco.

Proceeds from the event will go to this September’s Michael Chekhov Theatre Festival (newly renamed).

In its ninth year, the festival, which has expanded to two weekends, will include:

  • Twelfth Night, a free, family-friendly Shakespeare reproduction, in Ballard Park Saturday, Sept. 16, 5 p.m.
  • A Soldier’s Story, a one-man show performed at East Ridge Middle School, Friday, Sept. 22, 7 p.m.
  • The Butcher, a play reading by Thrown Stone performed at Town Hall, Saturday Sept. 23, 2 p.m.
  • Eternal Youth, performed at East Ridge Middle School, Saturday Sept. 23, 7 p.m. 

It is the mission of the festival to celebrate Michael Chekhov’s connection to Ridgefield by bringing professional theatre performances to the Town. Michael Chekhov operated a theater school/studio in Ridgefield sixty years ago and later in Hollywood, coached many Hollywood actors and was nominated for an Oscar.

Tickets to the festival, donations, volunteer opportunities and additional information can be obtained at www.chekhovfestival.com or by calling 203-274-0261.