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The Education Program at Shakespeare & Company

Heart-stirring, crowd-rousing, life-changing theatre-in-education programs are a bedrock tradition at Shakespeare & Company. Our Education Program brings the classical poetry and plays of Shakespeare into the lives of as many students and teachers as possible in ways that are personally meaningful, educationally inspiring, and theatrically compelling.


One of the most extensive arts-in-education programs in the northeast, Shakespeare & Company reaches more than 40,000 students and teachers each year with innovative, socially responsive, and educationally challenging performances, workshops and residencies. The Program has been nationally recognized as an innovative leader in the field of integrating theatre arts into education, and teaching Shakespeare. Since the program was founded in 1978, nearly one million elementary, middle, and high school students have taken part. Our program immerses students in the world of Shakespeare and classical theatre in the most active, engaging, and personally meaningful ways.

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The Dennis Krausnick Fellowship Fund (DKFF) provides financial assistance for artists of color to participate in our professional training programs.

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Education Programs

Fall Festival of Shakespeare

Nationally replicated and locally treasured, the annual Fall Festival of Shakespeare brings over 500 high school students together each year for a nine-week, collaborative, non-competitive, celebratory exploration and production of multiple Shakespeare plays.

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Northeast Regional Tour of Shakespeare

Since 1982, Shakespeare & Company has sent educational workshops and touring productions of Shakespeare’s plays to middle and high schools, colleges, large-scale performance venues, and community centers all over the Northeast and beyond, reaching more than 20,000 students each year. Our emphasis is on Shakespeare’s language, dramatic action, pleasure in playing, and the vital relationship that exists between the actors and the audience.

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Elementary & Middle School Tour

“SHAKESPEARE AND THE LANGUAGE THAT SHAPED A WORLD” A whirlwind tour through the life, times, and works of William Shakespeare, led by six actors equipped with six stools, a couple of broadswords, a bit of historical information and scenes from many of his greatest plays. This energetic, fast-paced peek into Shakespeare’s world and Elizabethan life was created by Kevin G. Coleman, Director of Education at Shakespeare & Company. It is a fun, accessible introduction to Shakespeare with enough depth to please students who have already studied his works. This 45 minute presentation comes with accompanying workshops in performance.

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Professional Development Workshops

Designed for Teachers, Directors and Teaching Artists to help create dynamic, engaging learning experiences of Shakespeare in the classroom and on the stage. Shakespeare & Company’s unique and long-developed techniques awaken the emotional, imaginative and physical dimensions of the text. Teachers learn appropriate strategies to help students experience the power and beauty of Shakespeare’s language, and to engage with the texts in deeper and more personal ways. Brought back to the classroom and rehearsal rooms, these approaches engage students’ own multiple intelligences, enabling a more passionate, personal, and comprehensive experience of the characters and understanding of the plays. These workshops are designed by Kevin G. Coleman, Shakespeare & Company’s Education Director. Other master teachers, actors, and directors from the Company may join the faculty to help participants to experience, and then develop, their own dynamic and engaging learning experiences of Shakespeare in the classroom and on the stage.

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School Residencies

Ranging from one-day to ten-week programs, school residencies offer elementary, middle and high school students an innovative and meaningful introduction to Shakespeare, both in and out of the classroom. Teams of teaching artists, professional directors, actors, and technical staff work in collaboration with educators to introduce students to Shakespeare in ways that are active, imaginative, and personally meaningful.

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Spring Young Company

This program was designed for youths ages 16-20 who are looking to begin or continue their actor training. Young actors work on voice, movement, text, scene work, and much more. What young actors haven’t found elsewhere they will find here.

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Shakespeare & Young Company, Summer Conservatory

Shakespeare & Young Company Summer Conservatory is designed to bring Shakespeare & Company’s methodology to burgeoning young actors ages 17-20.

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Riotous Youth

These fun and inspiring 2- and 3-week summer theatre programs introduce students ages 7 to 17 to Shakespeare's language, his stories, characters, and themes using imaginative and playful methods. Riotous Company is a more advanced 3-week program for high school students. TO ENROLL: Scroll down to see program dates and enrollment links.

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Shakespeare in the Courts

In conjunction with the Berkshire Juvenile Court System, adolescent offenders study, rehearse, and perform Shakespeare as an alternative to more punitive consequences.

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Meet the Faculty

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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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