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Guild Hall creates outdoor space for live theater

Oscar winner Mercedes Ruehl will star in "The

Oscar winner Mercedes Ruehl will star in "The Gin Game" at Guild Hall in East Hampton Sept. 4. Credit: Invision/AP/Charles Sykes

Live theater is in the cards on Long Island this summer after all. On Sept. 4, Guild Hall in East Hampton will present "The Gin Game" starring Mercedes Ruehl and Harris Yulin, one of a number of outdoor performances the venue has lined up at its newly created garden space.

For the event, dubbed Play in the Yard, guests can see the play from a Lawn Circle, which can accommodate groups of one or two people. Each circle is six feet in diameter and spaced six feet apart from other groups. Guild Hall worked with its landscapers to move shrubs, build walls and create a safe space that could accommodate plays and musical performances this summer. A 16-by-16-foot platform was also built and light and sound equipment installed.

"We also got out measuring tape and figured out how many people we can accommodate and we came up with 49," said Josh Gladstone, artistic director of the John Drew Theater at Guild Hall. Guests are required to wear face masks.

"The Gin Game" is sold out, but people can call 631-324-0806 or go to guildhall.org to be put on a waiting list and to inquire about other outdoor events.

And if you can't get tickets to "The Gin Game," Gladstone said the venue is hoping to record a performance inside the John Drew Theater without an audience this fall that would be streamed.

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