John Lithgow will star as the title character in Shakespeare in the Park's 2014 Public Theater production of King Lear, directed by Daniel Sullivan, at the Delacorte Theater in Central Park.
(© Tristan Fuge)

The Public Theater has announced that the 2014 free Shakespeare in the Park season will feature Shakespearean crowd-pleasers Much Ado About Nothing directed by Jack O'Brien (Macbeth) and King Lear directed by Daniel Sullivan (The Snow Geese).

Much Ado About Nothing will feature Lily Rabe (American Horror Story, Seminar) as Beatrice and Hamish Linklater (Seminar) as Benedick. The production will run for five weeks beginning June 3 and ending July 6.

Emmy and Tony Award winner John Lithgow, who last appeared at Shakespeare in the Park's Delacorte Theater in Hamlet in 1975, returns in July to play the title character in King Lear. Lear will begin performances July 22 and run through August 17.

Tickets to The Public Theater's Shakespeare in the Park are free and distributed, two per person, at the Delacorte Theater in Central Park on the day of the show. Since 1962, over five million people have enjoyed free productions of Shakespeare and other classical works and musicals at the Delacorte Theater. Conceived by founder Joe Papp as a way to make great theater accessible to all, Shakespeare in the Park continues increase access to theater and engage the community.