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Our Actor Training Faculty

Dennis Krausnick

Dennis Krausnick

Dennis Krausnick is a founder of Shakespeare & Company and has served as its Director of Training for nearly 25 years. Krausnick has been central to the creation and development of the Company’s internationally acclaimed actor training programs. He has also developed a number of training programs utilizing theater training methods for corporate and other non-theater clientele. Krausnick holds an MA from St. Louis University and an MFA in Acting from NYU. As a Master Teacher of text and rhetoric, Krausnick moreDennis Krausnick is a founder of Shakespeare & Company and has served as its Director of Training for nearly 25 years. Krausnick has been central to the creation and development of the Company’s internationally acclaimed actor training programs. He has also developed a number of training programs utilizing theater training methods for corporate and other non-theater clientele. Krausnick holds an MA from St. Louis University and an MFA in Acting from NYU. As a Master Teacher of text and rhetoric, Krausnick has provided residencies and workshops for theater companies and university theater departments across the country. As a teacher, director or guest-artist, he has worked in theatre training programs across the country including NYU, ACT, Boston University, Emerson College, Wake Forest University, Southern Methodist University, University of Washington, MIT, University of Pittsburgh, University of Tennessee, Chapman University, Bradley University, University of South Carolina and Western Carolina University. As a director, his Shakespeare credits include most of the Shakespeare canon. He also directed the award-winning television special about Edith Wharton, Songs from the Heart. Krausnick has adapted the fiction of Edith Wharton and Henry James for the stage creating numerous one-act and full-length plays all of which have been produced one or more times at Shakespeare & Company as well as by other theaters. Krausnick was awarded the 2006 Bingham Chair of Humanities by the University of Louisville in recognition of his accomplishments as a Master Teacher of Shakespeare Performance. He is currently devising a one-man performance piece which has had a dozen workshop performances to date.
Tina Packer

Tina Packer

Tina Packer is the founding artistic director of Shakespeare & Company. She has directed most of Shakespeare’s plays (some of them several times), acted in seven of them (never when directing) and taught the whole canon one way or another at over thirty colleges in the U.S., including Harvard, M.I.T. and NYU. At Columbia, she taught in the M.B.A. program for four years, resulting in the publication of her piece, Power Plays: Shakespeare’s Lessons in Leadership and Management with Deming moreTina Packer is the founding artistic director of Shakespeare & Company. She has directed most of Shakespeare’s plays (some of them several times), acted in seven of them (never when directing) and taught the whole canon one way or another at over thirty colleges in the U.S., including Harvard, M.I.T. and NYU. At Columbia, she taught in the M.B.A. program for four years, resulting in the publication of her piece, Power Plays: Shakespeare’s Lessons in Leadership and Management with Deming Professor John Whitney. For Scholastic, she wrote Tales from Shakespeare, a children’s book and recipient of the Parent’s Gold Medal Award. She began her career in England, having trained at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art, where she won the Ronson Award for most Outstanding Actor. Following this, she became an associate artist of the Royal Shakespeare Company, performing at Stratford, in the West End, and on tour. She has worked at The Royal Court in London; Glasgow, Edinburgh, Leicester, Coventry and Hornchurch repertory companies. For BBC Television, she played Dora to Ian McKellen’s David Copperfield, was a love interest for Patrick Troughton’s Doctor Who (which she has never lived down), and also performed in several other TV plays and series. She came to the U.S. in 1974 when the Ford Foundation funded an eleven-month project for her to research the visceral roots of Elizabethan theater with five master teachers (Kristin Linklater, John Barton, B.H. Barry, John Broome, Trish Arnold), fifteen actors, and three managers. Out of these projects led by Tina throughout England and the US, her work has translated into the aesthetic and practical methods that Shakespeare & Company is based on, and still practices to this day. Tina then received two grants from the Ford Foundation to travel the world, looking at the relationship of mind, body, sacred texts, stand-up comedy, voice, and actor–audience relationship in her studies. The current company was founded in 1978 at Edith Wharton’s derelict mansion in Lenox, far from the cities of New York and London. Tina has returned to acting from time to time, most notably as Edith Wharton and a two-year stretch as Shirley Valentine, playing in Lenox, Boston and Louisville, and Lettice in Lettice and Lovage. For the Boston Shakespeare Company, she directed a season of twelve Irish plays, including the U.S. premiere of Observe the Sons of Ulster Marching towards the Somme. She has received the state of Massachusetts’s highest honor, The Commonwealth Award, and has six honorary degrees (which gives her great pleasure as she never went to regular college). During the mid-90’s, Tina conceived the idea for Women of Will, and subsequently received grants from the Guggenheim and Bunting fellowships to fund the project. This collaboration resulted in its first incarnation, at that time. In 2009, desperate to get back to WoW, Tina gave up the artistic directorship—though Shakespeare & Company remains her creative home and passion. She began work, first with Nigel Gore and then joined by Eric Tucker, to bring Women of Will to its present form of one Overview and five separate performances. This is Tina’s seventh creative collaboration with Nigel (including playing George and Martha in Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?) and she would like to acknowledge the power of their work together over the past six years. Her book Women of Will: Following the Feminine in Shakespeare’s Plays was released in 2015.
Karen Beaumont

Karen Beaumont

Karen Beaumont has been studying movement for actors since 1983; clown, mask and acting since 1975. Concurrent with a career in acting in Canada which began as a professional performing a country and western version of Othello at the Montreal Summer Olympics in 1976, as well as working in theaters across Canada with actors such as Layne Coleman, Linda Griffith, Richard Monet and directors Guy Sprung and Paul Thompson. She was a founding member of 25th Street Theatre in Saskatoon, moreKaren Beaumont has been studying movement for actors since 1983; clown, mask and acting since 1975. Concurrent with a career in acting in Canada which began as a professional performing a country and western version of Othello at the Montreal Summer Olympics in 1976, as well as working in theaters across Canada with actors such as Layne Coleman, Linda Griffith, Richard Monet and directors Guy Sprung and Paul Thompson. She was a founding member of 25th Street Theatre in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada. Her years at the Canadian Mime School, as well as her studies with clown masters Philippe Gaulier and Merry Conway, have deeply shaped her teaching. She is also very influenced by the movement work of Monique Pagneaux and is a certified somatic movement educator and therapist (1996). As a movement teacher she teaches embodiment of text through traditional release work, the work of Trish Arnold and focuses on somatic embodiment. She began training with Shakespeare & Company in 1981 and began to apprentice with movement teachers Trish Arnold and John Broome in 1985. She has been teaching movement, mask and clown and acting with Shakespeare & Company since 1987. Karen has been Head of the Theatre Program at Bard College at Simon’s Rock since 1989. Recently she was Associate Director and Movement Director of the multimedia production of Haruki Murakami’s The Wind Up Bird Chronicles (NYC, Edinburgh, Singapore). windupbc.com. Currently Karen is developing her work in spatial dramaturgy, somatic embodiment and, as always, as an actor and director.
Kevin G. Coleman

Kevin G. Coleman

Kevin is a founding member of Shakespeare & Company, a member of its Board and is involved in all three branches of the company: he acts, directs, teaches and choreographs in the Performance Program, he is one of the master teachers in the Training Program, (teaching Basics, Text, Stage Combat, Clown and Wit), and serves as the director of Shakespeare & Company’s Education Program. Since 1979 he directed most of the Northeast Regional Tour productions (reaching schools, colleges and moreKevin is a founding member of Shakespeare & Company, a member of its Board and is involved in all three branches of the company: he acts, directs, teaches and choreographs in the Performance Program, he is one of the master teachers in the Training Program, (teaching Basics, Text, Stage Combat, Clown and Wit), and serves as the director of Shakespeare & Company’s Education Program. Since 1979 he directed most of the Northeast Regional Tour productions (reaching schools, colleges and performance venues across New England, New Jersey and New York). Under Kevin’s leadership, the artists of Shakespeare & Company’s Education Program have developed such programs as: Shakespeare & Young Company, (an intensive summer training program for 17-20 year olds); Riotous Youth, (a recurring 2-week-long summer program for 7-9, 10-12 and 13-15 year olds); Shakespeare in the Courts, (a collaboration with Berkshire County Juvenile Court, as well as the Probation Department where juvenile offenders and those in need of special services work with Shakespeare & Company artists to rehearse and perform Shakespeare as an obligation to the Court); Professional Development Workshops (for directors, teaching artists and teachers) and most notably, the Fall Festival of Shakespeare, now in its 28th year (over 250 Shakespeare productions) where students from 10 Massachusetts and eastern New York high schools annually present full productions of Shakespeare in their own schools, and then collectively during a week-long celebration in the Tina Packer Playhouse. In the Performance season, Kevin has acted in numerous productions (most recently the Fool in King Lear), directed several Shakespeare plays (most recently Winter’s Tale), as well as readings, adaptations, (several of Dennis Krausnick’s Edith Wharton adaptations), many modern and contemporary plays, and developed the 7 actor performance piece, Shakespeare and the Language that Shaped a World. He has choreographed numerous mainstage fights, and works with the clowns. Outside of Shakespeare & Company, Kevin serves as the Theatre Director at the Austen Riggs Center where he teaches and has directed over 30 productions. He has taught, directed or been a guest artist at the American Stage Company, Shenandoah Shakespeare, the Shakespeare Theatre Association (STA), MIT, Harvard, UMass/Boston, UW/Madison, Columbia, Tulane, LSU, UCDavis, DePauw, U. of Akron, SUNY/Albany, Stanford, Queensland University of Technology-Brisbane, Lincoln Center, the Folger, both Stratfords (UK and Ontario), and the Mercury Theatre in Colchester, UK. Kevin has served as a Project Director for both the NEH and NEA. Shakespeare & Company’s Education Program has been recognized by the President’s Council on the Arts and Humanities, the MacArthur Foundation and the GE Foundation as a “Champion of Change” in Arts in Learning. Shakespeare & Company’s Education Program received the Commonwealth Award, the highest honor awarded for the Arts by the state of Massachusetts. In 2009, Kevin received the Distinguished Theatre Artist award from the Massachusetts Alliance for Arts Education, and in 2006,Shakespeare in the Courts; a program he created in collaboration with Judge Paul E. Perachi received the “Coming Up Taller” award at the White House. In 2016, he was the runner-up for the Tony Award for Education. Kevin holds degrees from St. Louis University and NYU.
Jenna May Cass

Jenna May Cass

Jenna May found her way to Shakespeare & Company while training in Linklater Voice. After taking both the Month-Long Intensive and the Conservatory in 2012, she immediately returned to begin teacher training, ultimately falling in love with the sonnet progression, which she now teaches, along with text. Originally from Washington State, Jenna May earned a degree in dramatic arts from Western Washington University, trained further with RADA, Theatricum Botanicum, Louis Colaianni, and Natsuko Ohama. Based in Brooklyn, she is a moreJenna May found her way to Shakespeare & Company while training in Linklater Voice. After taking both the Month-Long Intensive and the Conservatory in 2012, she immediately returned to begin teacher training, ultimately falling in love with the sonnet progression, which she now teaches, along with text. Originally from Washington State, Jenna May earned a degree in dramatic arts from Western Washington University, trained further with RADA, Theatricum Botanicum, Louis Colaianni, and Natsuko Ohama. Based in Brooklyn, she is a text and voice coach for The Humanist Project. Jenna May previously worked as a voice teacher, dialect, movement, and text coach in San Francisco, where she also acted and directed, having had the privilege to develop new work, in addition to playing with plenty of Shakespeare.
Mary  Coy

Mary Coy

Mary is a Designated Linklater teacher with many years experience acting and teaching voice, acting and improvisation in universities and professional theatre training programs all over the United States including Shakespeare & Company, University of Maryland, NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts, University of Mississippi, Virginia Commonwealth University, and Syracuse University. She has an M.Litt/MFA in Shakespeare and Renaissance Literature in Performance from Mary Baldwin College and the American Shakespeare Center. Mary has coached voice and dialects at Arena Stage, moreMary is a Designated Linklater teacher with many years experience acting and teaching voice, acting and improvisation in universities and professional theatre training programs all over the United States including Shakespeare & Company, University of Maryland, NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts, University of Mississippi, Virginia Commonwealth University, and Syracuse University. She has an M.Litt/MFA in Shakespeare and Renaissance Literature in Performance from Mary Baldwin College and the American Shakespeare Center. Mary has coached voice and dialects at Arena Stage, Roundhouse Theater, Ford’s Theater, Signature Theatre, and Chesapeake Bay Shakespeare. She has performed with Nelson County Shakespeare Festival, Hamner Theater, Kristin Linklater’s Company of Women, Ensemble Studio Theater, the Open Eye and Shakespeare & Company. Directing credits include The Waiting Room (at UMD), A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Richard II, As You Like It, and Taming of the Shrew. Mary is Shakespeare consultant to the Nelson County Public Schools and, with Betty Tabony, has written a manual for teaching Shakespeare to middle school students and edited a young people’s edition of King Lear for Swan Books. She currently lives in Washington, DC.
Dave Demke

Dave Demke

Dave Demke received his BA in Theatre Arts from Minnesota State University, and his MFA in Performance from the University of Maryland. He was the Artistic Director of Stark Raving Theatre in Portland, OR; the Associate Director of Training for Shakespeare & Company; and a principle dancer with the Red River Dance Company in Fargo, ND. As an actor he has appeared in productions in New York and regionally, as well as performing at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival and in moreDave Demke received his BA in Theatre Arts from Minnesota State University, and his MFA in Performance from the University of Maryland. He was the Artistic Director of Stark Raving Theatre in Portland, OR; the Associate Director of Training for Shakespeare & Company; and a principle dancer with the Red River Dance Company in Fargo, ND. As an actor he has appeared in productions in New York and regionally, as well as performing at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival and in Beijing, China. As a director he has worked extensively in Portland, OR, and at Shakespeare & Company in Lenox, MA. He has guest directed at Purdue University, Skidmore College, and Northeastern University. As a Designated Linklater Voice teacher, he’s guest taught at various universities, as well as teaching at the Linklater Center in New York, and at the National Theatre of Ghana.
Susan Dibble

Susan Dibble

Susan Dibble is a choreographer, dancer, teacher and painter. She graduated from SUNY College at Purchase with a B.F.A. in Dance in 1976. In 1987 Susan joined the faculty of Brandeis University, where she teaches Movement for Actors, Modern Dance, Choreography, Clown, Mask, Period Styles, and Historical Dance. She is the director of Susan Dibble Dance Theater and has performed her work for over 30 years in New York, Massachusetts, and Vermont as well as numerous times at Shakespeare & moreSusan Dibble is a choreographer, dancer, teacher and painter. She graduated from SUNY College at Purchase with a B.F.A. in Dance in 1976. In 1987 Susan joined the faculty of Brandeis University, where she teaches Movement for Actors, Modern Dance, Choreography, Clown, Mask, Period Styles, and Historical Dance. She is the director of Susan Dibble Dance Theater and has performed her work for over 30 years in New York, Massachusetts, and Vermont as well as numerous times at Shakespeare & Company (Lenox, Mass.) in the program “DibbleDance”. Susan is a founding member of Shakespeare & Company where she is a master teacher and resident choreographer. She has choreographed for the Berkshire Theatre Festival, Phoenix Theatre Company, Merrimack Repertory Theatre, Manhattan Theatre Club, Nora Theater, Súgán Theater, Madison Repertory Company and numerous theaters in NYC. Before Brandeis, she taught at the Yale School of Drama, New York University’s Tisch School for the Arts, the Denver Center Performing Arts Center, University of Ohio, University of Utah and Webster College. Susan received the 2006 Leonard Bernstein Festival of Creative Arts Award for Distinguished Contribution to the Arts at Brandeis.
Rebecca Kemper Goodheart

Rebecca Kemper Goodheart

Rebecca Kemper Goodheart has been a director, actor, and teacher specializing in Shakespeare and Voice for over 25 years. She is a Designated Linklater Voice teacher who has directed over 30 professional and 50 educational productions. Currently serving as the Producing Director of Elm Shakespeare Company in New Haven, CT, she has worked with a dozen Shakespeare theaters around the world, and is a proud lifetime member of the Shakespeare Theatre Association. Other leadership positions have included Director of Training moreRebecca Kemper Goodheart has been a director, actor, and teacher specializing in Shakespeare and Voice for over 25 years. She is a Designated Linklater Voice teacher who has directed over 30 professional and 50 educational productions. Currently serving as the Producing Director of Elm Shakespeare Company in New Haven, CT, she has worked with a dozen Shakespeare theaters around the world, and is a proud lifetime member of the Shakespeare Theatre Association. Other leadership positions have included Director of Training at San Francisco Shakespeare Festival, Producing Artistic Director for Maryland Shakespeare Festival (an equity theater she founded in 1999), Artistic Director of the Metawhateverphor Theater in NYC, and Director of Education for Baltimore Shakespeare Festival. She is a classical text and voice teacher at Shakespeare & Company in Massachusetts and adjunct faculty at Southern Connecticut State University. She holds a BFA from NYU/Stella Adler Conservatory, a Master of Letters in Shakespeare & Renaissance Literature, and an MFA in Directing (both from the American Shakespeare Center). She has presented her research into Shakespeare’s dramatic use of rhetoric at numerous national conferences, and theatrical workshops across the country, as well as having her scholarship published in the Wooden O Journal and Shakespeare Criticism, online.
Charls Sedgwick Hall

Charls Sedgwick Hall

Charls Sedgwick Hall (Actor, Movement Teacher, Director) ) Charls’s acting credits include performances in Love’s Labour’s Lost, Mother Courage and Her Children, The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (Abridged, Revised), Romeo and Juliet, A Comedy of Errors, A Midsummer Night’s Dream with Shakespeare & Company; The Color Purple (The Musical) Los Angeles Ovations Award winning production, The Next Fairytale, The Escape Artist’s Children, and Follow with Celebration Theatre; Hamlet, Twelfth Night, Much Ado About Nothing with Southern California Shakespeare Festival; moreCharls Sedgwick Hall (Actor, Movement Teacher, Director) ) Charls’s acting credits include performances in Love’s Labour’s Lost, Mother Courage and Her Children, The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (Abridged, Revised), Romeo and Juliet, A Comedy of Errors, A Midsummer Night’s Dream with Shakespeare & Company; The Color Purple (The Musical) Los Angeles Ovations Award winning production, The Next Fairytale, The Escape Artist’s Children, and Follow with Celebration Theatre; Hamlet, Twelfth Night, Much Ado About Nothing with Southern California Shakespeare Festival; Uncle Vanya, As You Like It, The Vigil with RAAP Theater Company; A Christmas Carol, The Little Foxes, Cymbeline, Cyrano, with A Noise Within; Angels of Lemnos, David and Goliath in America, Hitler’s Head, The Lady’s Not For Burning with The Road Theatre Company; Tartuffe and Arms and The Man with The Classical Theatre Company; Twelfth Night and Saint Joan with The Royston Theater Company; as well as productions of Faith and The Good Thing, Our Country’s Good, Three Sisters, Death Unit, Measure For Measure, The Merry Wives of Windsor, The Firebugs. The Tempest, The Taming of the Shrew and Exit The King. Directing credits include Other World Lover and Afrocentricities with MPAACT, OUTStories and The Red Train Café with Celebration Theatre. During his many years of performing and studying with Shakespeare & Company, Charls toured with the School’s Program and trained as a Movement teacher in the discipline of Trish Arnold. He has taught as a Guest Professor in Movement at the National Institute of Performing Arts in Sydney, Australia; a Guest Professor in Movement and a Guest Artist performing in Angels of Lemnos at Queensland University of Technology in Brisbane, Australia, and held the position of Director of Training/Movement Instructor with Two Pence Theatre Company. Charls, a proud member of Actors’ Equity Association, holds an MFA from the NYU-School of the Performing Arts Graduate Acting Program, teaches and continues to study other Movement disciplines, as well as Shakespeare’s Text, Rhetoric and Sonnets.
Jane Nichols

Jane Nichols

Jane Nichols was the Founder/Artistic Director of the Crosswalk Theatre in Boston. She was a Creator/Director at Shakespeare & Company's Elementary & Jr High Schools program. Other Directing credits: Harvard University - Les Liaisons Dangereux; Feed the Monkey (original play by David Edelstein); Noises Off; A Midsummer Night’s Dream. Washington Ensemble Theatre (WET) - Tall Skinny Cruel Boys. Intiman Theatre - We Wont Pay We Wont Pay. Seattle Shakespeare Co - Comedy of Errors. Seattle University - Our Lady moreJane Nichols was the Founder/Artistic Director of the Crosswalk Theatre in Boston. She was a Creator/Director at Shakespeare & Company's Elementary & Jr High Schools program. Other Directing credits: Harvard University - Les Liaisons Dangereux; Feed the Monkey (original play by David Edelstein); Noises Off; A Midsummer Night’s Dream. Washington Ensemble Theatre (WET) - Tall Skinny Cruel Boys. Intiman Theatre - We Wont Pay We Wont Pay. Seattle Shakespeare Co - Comedy of Errors. Seattle University - Our Lady of 121st St. Cornish College of the Arts - The Tempest. Room Circus Medical Clowning - Clown Shorts. Logic Limited, Ltd. - Desdemona’s Dream; Schaden, Freude, and You: A 3 Clown Seminar; TiVO la Resistance; New Shorts; A Night at the Trojan Wall: a Clown version of the Iliad. Cirque du Soleil - development of cabaret Your New Best Friends. Teaching: Yale School of Drama; Juilliard; Harvard University; ART; ACT; Brown University; Actors Center in NYC; Stella Adler Conservatory; Shakespeare & Company, Emerson College; University of Washington. Theatre: Dallas Theatre Center, Portland Stage Company, En Garde Arts, Synapse Productions, New Georges, Gloucester Stage Company, Nora Theatre, Lyric Stage, Berkshire Public, Counterpoint Theatre, Cambridge Theatre Company. Film and TV: School Ties; Heights; The Living Room Waltz; Ed; Law & Order SVU; America’s Most Wanted; Connect With English; Rachel’s Dinner with Olympia Dukakis. Numerous voice overs and commercials.
Victoria  Rhoades

Victoria Rhoades

Victoria Rhoades, PhD is an educator, actor and director, specializing in Shakespeare and girls’ and boys’ development. Tori is a senior faculty of Movement and Text in the Training Program and has worked for years in various areas of the Education Program. She currently serves as founder and Executive Director of the newly developing, SAGE Center, (Shakespeare, the Arts, Gender and Education). Tori strives to create spaces where young women and men can respectfully and playfully learn from, and alongside moreVictoria Rhoades, PhD is an educator, actor and director, specializing in Shakespeare and girls’ and boys’ development. Tori is a senior faculty of Movement and Text in the Training Program and has worked for years in various areas of the Education Program. She currently serves as founder and Executive Director of the newly developing, SAGE Center, (Shakespeare, the Arts, Gender and Education). Tori strives to create spaces where young women and men can respectfully and playfully learn from, and alongside one another. Favorite regional theatre roles include Rosalind (As You Like It), The Governess (The Turn of the Screw), Carol (Oleanna), Charity (Summer), among others. Tori holds a Masters’ and PhD from NYU integrating the teaching pedagogy of Shakespeare & Company with the Relational Psychology work of Carol Gilligan. She holds a BS in theatre from Northwestern University. She has worked as a guest director at high schools and universities in the Northeast, and as founding Performing Arts Director at an innovative high school in Sonoma County, CA. She was a two-time recipient of artist grants from the Lotta M Crabtree Foundation, as well as a grant from the Massachusetts Cultural Council. She is a member of both Actors’ Equity Association and SAG-AFTRA. Her production of A Midsummer Nights’ Dream was awarded “Best Production” by the University of Pittsburgh Department of Theatre Arts. Tori is currently writing a piece for publication on creating “safe” learning spaces for young men and women to create, work and learn together.
Gwendolyn Schwinke

Gwendolyn Schwinke

Gwendolyn Schwinke has served as voice and text coach at Shakespeare & Company for The Merchant of Venice, Two Gentlemen of Verona, Or, Ugly Lies the Bone, The Comedy of Errors, Hamlet, The Unexpected Man and Shakespeare and the Language that Shaped a World, and created and directed Worse than Wolves for Henry VI.6. Gwendolyn has worked as vocal coach for other professional companies including Oxford Shakespeare Company (MS), Atlantic Stage (SC), Cheap Theatre and Frank Theatre in Minneapolis, and moreGwendolyn Schwinke has served as voice and text coach at Shakespeare & Company for The Merchant of Venice, Two Gentlemen of Verona, Or, Ugly Lies the Bone, The Comedy of Errors, Hamlet, The Unexpected Man and Shakespeare and the Language that Shaped a World, and created and directed Worse than Wolves for Henry VI.6. Gwendolyn has worked as vocal coach for other professional companies including Oxford Shakespeare Company (MS), Atlantic Stage (SC), Cheap Theatre and Frank Theatre in Minneapolis, and for multiple university productions. Professional acting credits include Gertrude in Hamlet, Mistress Quickly in The Merry Wives of Windsor, The Nurse in Romeo and Juliet, Desdemona in Carlyle Brown’s The Masks of Othello, Margie in Good People, Amanda in The Glass Menagerie, Jesse in ‘night Mother, and numerous other roles. She is a member of Actor’s Equity. When not at Shakespeare & Company, Gwendolyn teaches voice and acting in the BFA program at Coastal Carolina University. She holds an MFA from Illinois State University, is a Designated Linklater Voice Teacher, a Certified Feldenkrais Movement Teacher and a Certified Teacher of the Colaianni Approach to Speech and Dialects.
Michael F. Toomey

Michael F. Toomey

Michael has been company member at Shakespeare & Company for nearly twenty years where he is an actor, director and faculty member. He is the Co-Artistic Director of the NYC based theatre company The Humanist Project. He also a founding member and trustee of Split Knuckle Theatre, which devises new works of theatre and is currently touring throughout the world with recent performances in Bangkok, Athens and Paris. Michael has been a Visiting Assistant Professor at Binghamton University teaching Clown, moreMichael has been company member at Shakespeare & Company for nearly twenty years where he is an actor, director and faculty member. He is the Co-Artistic Director of the NYC based theatre company The Humanist Project. He also a founding member and trustee of Split Knuckle Theatre, which devises new works of theatre and is currently touring throughout the world with recent performances in Bangkok, Athens and Paris. Michael has been a Visiting Assistant Professor at Binghamton University teaching Clown, Shakespeare and Fight. Michael teaches workshops for professional actors in Fight, Clown and Shakespeare around the country and abroad. He has directed, devised and choreographed numerous shows including Titus Andronicus, Julius Caesar and Alice In Wonderland. Michael has performed throughout the East Coast and internationally including roles such as Macbeth, Scapin, and Polonius. He is a graduate from LISPA (London International School of Performing Arts) and holds an MFA in Lecoq-based actor created theatre from Naropa University. www.michaelftoomey.com
Claire Warden

Claire Warden

Claire Warden first came to Shakespeare & Company in 2008, having relocated from the UK, taking the Rhetoric and Month-Long Intensive workshops. After a few years establishing herself in New York City and building her acting and teaching career across America, she returned in 2013 to begin teacher training in the company’s fight work. In 2016 she joined the faculty as a Fight and Text teacher. Along with teaching for Shakespeare & Company, she also teaches Acting, Fight and Verse moreClaire Warden first came to Shakespeare & Company in 2008, having relocated from the UK, taking the Rhetoric and Month-Long Intensive workshops. After a few years establishing herself in New York City and building her acting and teaching career across America, she returned in 2013 to begin teacher training in the company’s fight work. In 2016 she joined the faculty as a Fight and Text teacher. Along with teaching for Shakespeare & Company, she also teaches Acting, Fight and Verse & Text with the Shakespeare Forum in New York City, of which she is the Director of Engagement. She is a freelance fight choreographer and acting coach, and her numerous acting roles include Off-Broadway credits Engaging Shaw (Abingdon Theatre), The Libertine (Kirk Theatre), A Persistent Memory (Becket Theatre). Other New York and Regional credits include One Man, Two Guvnors (Berkeley Rep/South Coast Rep), Edward IV (American Shakespeare Center), Outside Mullingar (FST), Henry V (as Henry V) (Accidental Shakespeare), A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Hamlet & Henry V (The Shakespeare Forum), Romeo and Juliet (Stoneham Theatre), Other Desert Cities (Lake Dillon Theatre), Moon for the Misbegotten (Luna Stage), Mary Stuart (Theatreworks), Lost In Yonkers (New Harmony Theatre) & Humble Boy (Publick Theatre). TV and film work includes Quantico (ABC network), I Can, I Will, I Did, Freedom Fighter, The Factory & Departure & the TV documentary Jack the Ripper – An Ongoing Mystery for the Discovery Channel.
Sarah Weatherwax

Sarah Weatherwax

Sarah Weatherwax, originally from the US, has an honours BFA in Acting from Emerson College. She now lives with her family in Toronto. Along with private voice/audition coaching, she's worked as an on-set acting coach and taught at various places: Humber College Comedy Program; Workman Arts, a company devoted to fine arts training for people struggling with addiction and/or mental illness; Shakespeare & Company in Massachusetts; and Straeon Acting Studios in Toronto, Montreal and Boston. She's done voice work on moreSarah Weatherwax, originally from the US, has an honours BFA in Acting from Emerson College. She now lives with her family in Toronto. Along with private voice/audition coaching, she's worked as an on-set acting coach and taught at various places: Humber College Comedy Program; Workman Arts, a company devoted to fine arts training for people struggling with addiction and/or mental illness; Shakespeare & Company in Massachusetts; and Straeon Acting Studios in Toronto, Montreal and Boston. She's done voice work on numerous shows including Young Drunk Punk, Haven, Heartland, Saving Hope, Rookie Blue, and movies such as The Book of Negroes (mini-series), Beeba Boys, Hobo With A Shotgun and The Big Hit. Her production of MUD by Maria Irene Fornes, received four (out of five) Ns from NOW Magazine, Toronto’s primary arts paper. Other stage credits include Marlene in Bordertown Cafe at the Port Stanley Festival Theatre and Violet in Farther Westdirected by Jackie Maxwell. She was the recipient of a generous grant from the Canada Council for the Arts to complete her training with the renowned Kristin Linklater in 2003. One of Sarah's numerous short stories was a finalist (one of ten selected from 500) in an international competition. Member: Canadian Actors’ Equity Assoc. (CAEA) and the Alliance of Canadian Cinema, Television & Radio Artists (ACTRA). www.sarahweatherwax.com
Kristin Wold

Kristin Wold

Kristin Wold first trained and acted with Shakespeare & Company in 1987, playing Cobweb in A Midsummer Night’s Dream and Abhorson in Measure for Measure. Acting roles with the company since then include Shakespeare’s Will (Anne Hathaway), Julius Caesar (Portia, Calpurnia, Lucius), King Lear (Regan), Dibbledance (Dancer), The Tempest (Ariel), The Memory of Water (Teresa), Sea Marks (Timothea), Othello (Emilia), Ice Glen (Sarah), King Lear (Cordelia), Twelfth Night (Viola), Measure For Measure (Isabella), Berkeley Square (Helen), Macbeth (Witch, Lady Macduff), moreKristin Wold first trained and acted with Shakespeare & Company in 1987, playing Cobweb in A Midsummer Night’s Dream and Abhorson in Measure for Measure. Acting roles with the company since then include Shakespeare’s Will (Anne Hathaway), Julius Caesar (Portia, Calpurnia, Lucius), King Lear (Regan), Dibbledance (Dancer), The Tempest (Ariel), The Memory of Water (Teresa), Sea Marks (Timothea), Othello (Emilia), Ice Glen (Sarah), King Lear (Cordelia), Twelfth Night (Viola), Measure For Measure (Isabella), Berkeley Square (Helen), Macbeth (Witch, Lady Macduff), Romeo and Juliet (Juliet). She has worked extensively in our Education programs. Kristin has been the choreographer and movement director for many of our productions. She has been teaching Movement and Text in our Training programs since 1997. Elsewhere, Kristin teaches acting and movement in the BFA and MFA Acting programs at the University of Connecticut and has directed extensively for Connecticut Repertory Theatre. Recently she collaborated with artists from both Shakespeare & Company and the University of Connecticut to create an original dance theatre piece, Thetis: Immortal Fire. In addition to her lifelong study and immersion in Shakespeare at Shakespeare & Company, Kristin has studied at Burt Reynold’s Jupiter Theatre, Florida State University and with Tadashi Suzuki in Japan. www.kristinwold.com

From the Alumni

Lulu Fogarty

Lulu Fogarty

My experience at the 2007 Summer Training Institute was absolutely priceless….I learned to bring a sense of play to everything I do. Play might be the most important tool for an actor but it’s surprising how quickly we forget to play because we try to be ‘right.’ There is no such thing as ‘right.’ To me, this is what the moreMy experience at the 2007 Summer Training Institute was absolutely priceless….I learned to bring a sense of play to everything I do. Play might be the most important tool for an actor but it’s surprising how quickly we forget to play because we try to be ‘right.’ There is no such thing as ‘right.’ To me, this is what the training at STI is all about. These lessons??"play, trust, and be ‘wrong’??"are the most important tools an actor can ever have….Words cannot express how lucky I feel to have gotten the opportunity to train at S&Co and become part of this community.

Jenna Hoff

Jenna Hoff

All of the vocal and physical training we did enabled me to see how much freedom and availability are possible, which raised my expectations of myself. But for the first time I felt that I had the tools to move forward with those expectations. I can hone, clarify and broaden my Shakespeare monologues (and other pieces, too!), and I gained moreAll of the vocal and physical training we did enabled me to see how much freedom and availability are possible, which raised my expectations of myself. But for the first time I felt that I had the tools to move forward with those expectations. I can hone, clarify and broaden my Shakespeare monologues (and other pieces, too!), and I gained so much confidence, which is perhaps the most important thing. People have asked me where I ‘got so good at Shakespeare’ and I happily recommend the training programs at S&Co because I honestly think that they are some of the best training available in this country

Maura Matarese

Maura Matarese

I attend at least one workshop at Shakespeare & Company each year as it always allows me an opportunity to grow as actor, to continue to free my actor’s instrument, to meet exciting new artists from around the world, and to spend time in an environment I love, with a faculty whom I deeply respect. moreI attend at least one workshop at Shakespeare & Company each year as it always allows me an opportunity to grow as actor, to continue to free my actor’s instrument, to meet exciting new artists from around the world, and to spend time in an environment I love, with a faculty whom I deeply respect.

Teresa Spencer

Teresa Spencer

The most important thing I’ve taken from the Conservatory has been a sense of professionalism. I used to consistently walk into auditions feeling the terror of unpreparedness: even if I’d rehearsed my monologue or sides forwards and backwards, I would arrive at an audition and suddenly feel overtaken with a sense of not knowing what the hell I was doing, moreThe most important thing I’ve taken from the Conservatory has been a sense of professionalism. I used to consistently walk into auditions feeling the terror of unpreparedness: even if I’d rehearsed my monologue or sides forwards and backwards, I would arrive at an audition and suddenly feel overtaken with a sense of not knowing what the hell I was doing, and I’m sure that this came through in my demeanor and performance. Since doing the Conservatory, I’ve noticed a marked difference in my confidence. I know my way around my craft, and this changes everything about an audition situation. My pieces are well chosen and well prepared; I know how to center my breath and body; I walk in feeling relaxed and happy to be there. I feel like I belong in the room, and this significant shift in perspective has made an enormous difference for me professionally. I’m getting twice as many callbacks and jobs (yes, jobs!) as I used to. Since returning from the Conservatory, some of the accomplishments I’ve been most proud of have been a callback for Viola in Twelfth Night at an Equity theatre in Baltimore, the title role in a children’s show with Classika Theater (which I’m rehearsing right now), and an invitation to train for a month with a dance theatre company in Virginia. I’ll also be going back to Massachusetts in July to rehearse and perform two one-acts in the KO Festival. I think the best way to summarize what I learned at the Conservatory is that I went from thinking, ‘I want to be an actor,’ to knowing, ‘I am an actor.’ I feel confident in my abilities, and this changes everything about the way that I pursue work. I have a physical and vocal warm-up that works well for me and that I use to prepare for auditions, rehearsals, and performances. I know now how to prepare and how to keep text fresh and alive once I’ve “nailed it” once. All of this has made the process of auditioning so much less of a mystery… I’d recommend the Conservatory to any young actor who’s serious and passionate.

Halima Henderson

Halima Henderson

I’ve kept busy over the past year, and I have to say that weekend intensive has proven to be very effective! Everyone always asks about it when they see it on my resume and I love waxing poetically about it! Not only that, friendships that I made during my weekend have been long-lasting, I love running into folks at auditions moreI’ve kept busy over the past year, and I have to say that weekend intensive has proven to be very effective! Everyone always asks about it when they see it on my resume and I love waxing poetically about it! Not only that, friendships that I made during my weekend have been long-lasting, I love running into folks at auditions and have coffee with folks in the city and one friend even helped to book me in my first fully compensated theater job! Those three days were successful in so many ways I hadn’t even planned on!

Crown

Shakespeare & Company is a professional live theatre company in the heart of the Berkshires, presenting a vibrant summer performance season featuring the works of Shakespeare in repertory with classic and contemporary plays. The Company offers one of the most extensive actor training programs by a regional theatre in the country, and is also home to an award-winning and nationally recognized theatre-in-education program.

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