Shakespeare in the Arb returns to Nichols Arboretum for its 21th season in 2023 

Shakespeare in the Arb is a 2 hour outdoor, moving performance that takes place within Nichols Arboretum. Audience members should be prepared for light weather conditions, periods of sitting, standing and walking.

Buy your tickets in advance through MUTO!

Tickets will be available in advance of the performances via the Michigan Union Ticket Office online, in person or by phone. Matthaei Botanical Gardens & Nichols Arboretum members will have early access to ticket sales and a discount.

Ticket sales begin early for Matthaei-Nichols members – Become a Matthaei-Nichols member today!

Ticket prices*:

General Admission – $25

Member Admission – $20 (must provide membership number)

Student Admission – $15 (must provide student ID number)

Youth (5-18) – $15

* Michigan Union Ticket Office service fees apply to all ticket sales.


While there is no designated parking lot for Nichols Arboretum, there are some nearby options:

  • M86 – Ann Structure on the corner of E. Ann St and Glen Ave, 10 minute walk to the Arb, no permit after 6 weekdays, free all weekend
  • M5 – Catherine Structure on the corner of Catherine St and Glen Ave, 10 minute walk to the Arb, no permit after 6 weekdays, free all weekend
  • Metered parking on Observatory or Washington Heights, $2.10/hr M-Sa 8am-6pm, free after 6
  • M28 – School of Public Health II East, 1500 Washington Heights, permit required 6am-5pm M-Fri
Tickets Held at Will Call

Tickets are held at Will Call, located at the Arb Visitor Center, 1610 Washington Heights.

Receipts of sale from the Michigan Union Ticket Office (digital or printed) must be redeemed at Will Call for a ticket lanyard between 5pm and 6:15pm.

The performance begins promptly at 6:30pm and runs until approximately 8:30pm.

COVID & Cancellation Policies

Cancellation policy as of 1/10/2022

Extreme weather and other circumstances can warrant the cancellation of a performance. Ticket holders will be notified via e-mail regarding a cancellation. While all efforts will be made to continue with the production, the directorial team reserves the option to cancel a show.

 Cancellations due to severe weather, changes in COVID policies, or other extenuating circumstances may occur. Every effort will be made to provide advance notice. Please refer to the COVID refund policy of the Michigan Union Ticket Office.

In the event of a cancellation, refunds of the face value of tickets will be processed by the Michigan Union Ticket Office.
Ticket holders will be notified via email.

Performances are still typically held in non-severe weather conditions such as rain or heat.

No refunds or exchanges can be offered for a production that has not been canceled.


Shakespeare in the Arb scenes take place in a variety of locations throughout the Arb. Audience members should be prepared for periods of sitting, standing and approximately a mile of intermittent walking. Routes to play scenes are unpaved gravel paths, and include some slopes and stairs.

ADA compliant toilets are available at the Arb Visitor Center, before or after the play or a 10-15 minute walk from most scenes. Port-a-johns are available at the river landing, a 5-10 minute walk from most play scenes. Transportation by golf cart is available in cases of emergency. Contact Alexis Ford, event coordinator at or 734-647-8391 with other accessibility questions.

Watch a scene from Shakespeare in the Arb’s Romeo and Juliet.

SITA Book Junior-1

Read stories about the cast, characters, productions, history, and people of Shakespeare in the Arb and A Midsummer Night’s Dream.

Photo Gallery: A Midsummer Night’s Dream 

Photographer Kent McCormick captured scenes from many Shakespeare in the Arb productions over the years. The photos in this gallery bring to life the drama and spectacle of past Midsummer Night’s Dream performances. (Click on any photo to bring up a slide show of the galley.)


Watch: a video by the University of Michigan Out of the Blue channel on the 2015 performance of A Midsummer Night’s Dream.

Shakespeare 360: Watch a performance of a scene from Romeo and Juliet created by University of Michigan Social. 

Shakespeare in the Arb Romeo and Juliet

A Note from Director Kate Mendeloff

Director Kate Mendeloff writes about a 20th-anniversary celebration of Shakepeare in the Arb that almost was, and our plans to bring the production back in 2021.

Hear the music, voices, and creative forces – human, natural, and otherwise – behind the successful program, Shakespeare in the Arb (SITA).