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Shakespeare in the Garden

Living with Shakespeare

August 25 to 27, 2023

7:30 p.m.; Laking Garden

For its final Bard’s Bus Tour, Driftwood Theatre presents its most personal production to date, a love-letter to the poetry and plays of William Shakespeare. 

"Living with Shakespeare" poster, featuring illustrated shakespeare lounging in a modern sofa surrounded by a mess of garbage, and an exasperated man alongside him.

About Living with Shakespeare

By Jeremy Smith and Steven Gallagher Directed by Steven Gallagher
Music Direction by Tom Lillington Stage Management by Sandi Becker
Performed by Jeremy Smith with musical accompaniment by Tom Lillington 

“Shakespeare has taken over my life. He’s the Oscar to my Felix, the Ernie to my Bert, the R2 to my 3P0. He’s my constant and not always welcome companion.”- Jeremy, Living With Shakespeare 

In Living With Shakespeare, Driftwood Artistic Director Jeremy Smith reckons with his life-long relationship to the Bard of Avon. Weaving scenes, passages, and music from Shakespeare’s greatest plays with personal stories from Jeremy’s lifelong relationship to the Bard, Living With Shakespeare is an exploration of our continuing fascination with the world’s most recognizable playwright. 

Bard’s Bus Tour

Good people sharing great stories. Imagine epic, site-specific theatre with Ontario’s greatest outdoor spaces as powerful backdrops, where every performance is unique to each particular community. Driftwood Theatre’s Bard’s Bus Tour has been sharing theatre under the stars in places you love for over 25 years.

Living with Shakespeare Tickets

Whether you’re joining us with a chair of your own, want to rent one, or prefer sitting stage-side on the ground make sure you’ve got the best seats by reserving your tickets ahead of time. With Driftwood’s flexible, Pay What You Can Afford admission, guests are invited to select from four set ticket prices.

Show Tickets

Prices subject to HST and Service Fees

“Pay What you Can Afford” Ticket $15, $30, or $50
“Pay it Forward” Ticket
When you buy a ticket at the $75 level, you unlock two free tickets that Driftwood will send to people in your community who may not otherwise have access to professional theatre.
  • Pre-registration is required for this ticketed event.
  • Tickets are non-refundable and final sale.
  • After a purchase is complete, the tickets are the property of the ticket-holder, and RBG will be unable to accommodate any date or time changes.


Prices subject to HST and Service Fees. Limited number available.

Rent a Chair $5 per chair
Rent a Cushion $3 per cushion
Picnic for Two
$9 per car (FREE for RBG Members)

*Parking is very limited at Laking Garden; pre-reservations required. Please consider carpooling, biking, or parking at RBG Centre and walking to the Garden.

Enjoy a Picnic for Two

Pre-order a picnic to enjoy with your guest under the stars! Enjoy a selection of charcuterie, crudité and a sparkling water, all served in your own take-home RBG tote.

$75 (+ HST & Service Fee). Serves 2,

Available as a pre-order only. Already placed your order? Add-ons may be purchased separately even after your initial order is complete!

  • Charcuterie for two w/ Antipasto
  • Assorted Domestic Cheeses
  • Artisanal Baguette
  • Crudité w/ Hummus
  • Herbed Potato Salad
  • Assorted fruits w/ House made Beignet
  • Sparkling water

At Laking Garden

1221 Spring Gardens Road, Burlington (address may differ from your parking location; details to come before performance date).

Set on a fertile terraced plain that was once a market garden, Laking Garden is home to RBG’s herbaceous perennial collections. The belvedere at the end of the entrance path offers a panoramic view of the entire garden.


Have a question about Shakespeare at RBG? Click the topics below for more information. If you have a question that is not answered, give us a call at 905-527-1158 or send us a message.


Your tickets will be emailed to you as a pdf attachment shortly after online payment. You will be required to present these tickets upon arrival, either printed out or digitally on your personal device. 

Tickets are final sale. 


The garden will open to ticketholders at 6:30 p.m. Guests are encouraged to arrive early to secure their space, have time to purchase food and beverage and get settled before the performance begins. 

Present your parking and event tickets upon arrival.

Directions and Parking

This event is held at Laking Garden, 1221 Spring Garden Road in Burlington, Ontario. 

Parking is limited. Please consider carpooling. Upon registration, you will have the option to add parking to your order to secure a parking spot available at one of two parking lots on site. If you choose not to select a parking spot, you can either park at RBG Centre and walk (approx. 12 minutes) or ride your bike to the Garden.  

Laking Garden is not currently accessible by public transit. Bike racks are available on site. 


This event is held outdoors in a non-covered area. In the event of heavy rain or severe weather RBG has made arrangements to host this event in an alternative indoor location on August 25 and 27. Any changes regarding location will be communicated to ticket holders as soon as possible. RBG reserves the right to cancel the event due to inclement weather.  

Performance Length and Timing

The run time is approx. 90 minutes with no intermission. The performance begins at 7:30 p.m. The garden will open to ticketholders at 6:30 p.m. Guests are encouraged to arrive early to secure their space, have time to purchase food and beverage and get settled before the performance begins. 


Bring your own chair, sit stage-side on the ground, or rent a chair with prime seating! 

Rentals of chairs and cushions can be included as add-ons when purchasing tickets. There are a limited number available so be sure to book early to secure your spot! 

Food & Drink

Guests can pre-order a picnic basket (serves 2) as an add-on when purchasing tickets. 

Additional food and beverage will be available for purchase prior to the performance. Outside food and beverage is not permitted. 

What to Bring

Pack layers for the cooler evenings and don’t forget the bug spray! Make sure to bring your own chair, blanket or cushion if you are not renting through RBG.  

Outside food and beverage is not permitted. 


Washroom facilities are located near the entrance to the garden.


This event takes place on an open grass area of the garden. If accessing with a wheelchair / walker / stroller, an outdoor model is suggested. Accessible parking spaces are available in the Lower Parking Lot. 

If you have any further questions about accessibility at this event please contact us by phone (905-527-1158) or use the form at 

Pets & Service Animals

With the exception of service animals, personal dogs/cats/animals are not permitted at this performance.

Terms & Conditions

Tickets purchased to this event are final sale and non-refundable. Tickets can be transferred to someone else if you can no longer attend the event. Please keep your tickets and confirmation: it is proof of your purchase and allows entry into the experience. 

Liability: RBG assumes no responsibility for loss or damage to property, or for personal injury or mishap; all activities are at the risk of the participant. 

Filming/Photography Release: Please be advised that all photos, audio-video, and static images taken at this experience may be used for exhibit, reproduction, and/or distribution for RBG related promotional use, including all forms of print, television advertisement, social media and /or website display. In consideration of your participation as a guest or attendee of this experience, you authorize Royal Botanical Gardens, its legal representatives, suppliers, invited media and assigns unrestricted right and permission to copyright and use such photos and images under their sole discretion. Royal Botanical Gardens, its legal representatives, suppliers, invited media and assigns are released without limitation of any claims for libel or invasion of privacy. 

By purchasing tickets and participating in this event on RBG properties, you are agreeing to the above release for yourself, and on behalf of your guests.