Cristina Panfilio and Jody Hovland A theatre company takes a risk when it changes key elements of Shakespeare, as Iowa City's Riverside Theatre has by switching the protagonist in its presentation of The Tempest from Prospero to Prospera. Turning this male character into a female brings an entirely new dynamic to the performance, yet even though this makes for a unique production, it distracts from the tone of Shakespeare's text.

Three Weird Sisters, sexy love scenes, sword fights, and murder. I tell you, life doesn't get much better than this. Well, at least for a certain theatre reviewer it doesn't. Not even the mosquitoes could keep me from enjoying Riverside Theatre's summer production of Macbeth at the company's Shakespeare Festival in Iowa City.

Ninja-style nuns, two sets of twins separated at birth, woeful lovers, men vaguely resembling Elvis, and a society divided by religious differences. These and more are part of the annual Shakespeare festival at Riverside outdoor theatre in Iowa City, with The Comedy of Errors and Romeo & Juliet on stage in repertory through July 7.

Where can audiences see the World Wrestling Federation on stage in a Shakespeare comedy? And where can young lovers be serenaded by frogs as dusk settles over the park? The answer is Lower City Park in Iowa City, where Riverside Theatre presents a very modern interpretation of Shakespeare's As You Like It. Directed with wit and high energy by Mark Hunter, the comedy about love and family and all the complications one can imagine is distinguished by a rollicking soundtrack, youthful, exuberant performers, and hip-hop choreography.