Shakespeare Works is The Shakespeare Society’s multifaceted initiative in support of actors, directors and theatrical institutions. Through residencies, workshops, open rehearsals, lectures, post-show discussions, affordable classes and discounted memberships, The Shakespeare Society partners with a range of artists, theaters and cultural institutions to develop and support the production, exploration and appreciation of Shakespeare's works.
Partner institutions have included Classic Stage Company, the Public Theater, Red Bull Theater, Theatre for a New Audience, the Park Avenue Armory, Waterwell, Target Margin, the Continuum Company, NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts, the Acting Company, Pace University, the Morgan Library and Museum, the Guerrilla Shakespeare Project, and Fiasco Theatre Company.
The cornerstone of Shakespeare Works is a series of weeklong artist development Residencies. The Society provides participating actors and directors with modest stipends, study materials, rehearsal space and access to artistic, academic, and voice and text advisors who work in order to examine a single Shakespeare play over the course of 1 week (25 to 30 hours). The week concludes with a panel discussion reviewing the week’s work in front of a live audience. The program is designed to give participants the time and space to learn, experiment and explore the plays with a freedom that producing theater companies can rarely provide. The only residency requirement is that every word of the chosen play be read aloud.
Past participants include directors Martha Clarke, Rebecca Taichman, Davis McCallum, Tom Ridgely, Gregg Mozgala and Sam Gold; actors Michael Cumpsty, Elizabeth Marvel, John Douglas Thomson, Bill Camp, Arian Moayed, Seth Numrich, Gabriel Ebert, Jacob Fishel, Ismenia Mendes, Andre Holland and Michael Stuhlbarg; artistic advisors Jay O. Sanders, Doug Hughes, Michael Greif, Michael Kahn, Richard Easton, Barry Edelstein and Ron Daniels; scholars James Shapiro, Karen Newman, Ruth Carpenter and James Bednarz; and voice and text advisors Deborah Hecht, Elizabeth Smith and Kristin Linklater.