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"If music be the food of love, play on" is one of the most famous lines written by William Shakespeare.

It opens "12th Night," the Shakespearean comedy actors in Back Alley Productions are preparing to take on the road as they simultaneously wrap up a weekend of performances of "Deathtrap." Back Alley's performances of Shakespeare's comedy are part of its fifth annual Shakespeare Summer Series. All performances are free.

The last three performances of "Deathtrap" are Friday and Saturday nights, Aug. 4-5, at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday, Aug. 6, at 2:30 p.m. in Mars Theatre in LaFayette, Ga.

Performances of "12th Night" begin Saturday at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday at 3 p.m. at The Courtyard at Peacock Alley in Dalton, Ga., behind Crescent City Tavern, 324 S. Depot St.

The Sunday show will include a talk-back when the cast will stay after to answer questions and discuss the show, Shakespeare, acting and what it's like to learn Elizabethan dialogue, as well as offer photo-ops.

The BAP troupe will bring "12th Night" to Coolidge Park, 200 River St., on Saturday, Aug. 12, at 8 p.m. The final performance will be Saturday, Aug. 19, at 8 p.m. at Northwest Georgia Bank Amphitheater in Ringgold, Ga.

"The Twelfth Night" begins in the wake of a shipwreck. Lady Viola (Nicole Montgomery) washes up on the shores of the island kingdom of Illyria, penniless and alone. Disguising herself as a boy, she procures employment delivering love letters from the romantic Duke Orsino (Zachary Green) to the object of his infatuation, the aloof Lady Olivia (Madison Smith).

Things get sticky when Viola falls for the lovesick Duke, then stickier still when Lady Olivia falls for the disguised Viola. Add to the mix a drunken uncle, prudish steward and a wisecracking fool and you've got a knot that only Shakespeare can untangle.

Though the show is free, Back Alley will accept donations, which help fund these free Shakespeare performances.

Since the performances are outdoors, audience members are advised to bring water, snacks, chairs or blanket for seating at grass venues, bug spray and umbrellas, as they deem necessary.

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