Theatrical Playground at the Williamstown Theatre Festival for Families this Summer

Williamstown Theatre Festival Offers Free Family Entertainment & Educational Opportunities this Summer

Kids can enjoy free theater workshops and performances all summer long this year!  The Williamstown Theater Festival’s summer line-up includes some wonderful family-friendly shows, and each Friday evening performance will be preceded by a special workshop focused on some aspect of acting and/or theater production.

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The first Main Stage show of the summer, Animal Crackers, opens on Thursday, June 27th and runs through July 14th.  The show, a hilarious creation by the Marx Brothers, is sure to please anyone with a sense of humor. This family-friendly musical is best for ages 8yo and older.  The Main Stage will also host Pygmalion, a witty and engaging production for all ages, as well as the world premiere of the musical version of The Bridges of Madison County (not appropriate for all ages).  Tickets for kids are normally discounted with the purchase of an adult ticket, but on Friday nights kids can see these theater productions for free!

In conjunction with the theater’s free Friday evening children’s tickets is the festival’s workshop series, featuring a new theatrical topic each week.  Families can take part in a slapstick comedy activity, explore the theater’s props department, examine special effects production for a Main Stage show, and maybe even create their very own performance!  Bring the family to any of these workshops in this series and help to unlock the many creative possibilities that theater offers – kids who aren’t interested in acting may make the happy discovery that they love the behind-the-scenes aspects of theater production…

Family Friday Workshops Schedule:

  • Friday, July 5
    Superheroes Unite!
    Discover your own strengths and weaknesses in this action-packed afternoon, celebrating the different kinds of heroes that make up our wonderful world. Participants will develop power moves, form super squads, and work together to solve everyday problems…as well as very unusual challenges, which might require us to combine all of our powers.
  • Friday, July 12
    Crackers & Soup: Comedy inspired by the Marx Brothers

    With a nod to the WTF production of Animal Crackers, Family Fridays presents an all-ages comedy workshop, designed to help bring out your inner Marx Brother. Using slapstick, wordplay, and other elements of farce, participants will explore comedy in supremely silly style.
  • Friday, July 19
    Special Effects on Stage

    From fight choreography to creative sound design, the magic of theatre often depends on special effects. Together we will explore the elements of a stage production that can’t be seen from the audience, but that bring the fantastical to life.
  • Friday, July 26
    The Mystery of the Missing Mystery!

    Participants will come up with a fun and interesting mystery that has happened in Williamstown. Then, using games and activities, participants will work together to find clues, and solve the mystery.
  • Friday, August 2
    The Things They Carry: Exploring Props

    During this workshop, participants explore the importance of objects in storytelling. When, and why, does the right object make all the difference? This will include a visit to the Williamstown Theater Festival properties room – a once in a lifetime experience.
  • Friday, August 9
    Musical Workshop: Creating a Finale

    To celebrate a full summer of Family Fridays, WTF musicians and choreographers will help the participants create and perform their very own Grand Finale. Participants will write the lyrics, help with the music, and develop the dance moves before performing the closing number and becoming part of the Festival’s legendary history.

In addition to the Main Stage performances, the Williamstown Theater Festival offers an annual series of outdoor performances during the summer.  Set on a specially built stage at Williams College’s Poker Flats Field, the company will perform Dracula, or the Un-Dead nightly at 7:30pm from July 10-19.  Pack a picnic dinner and enjoy the gothic masterpiece underneath a darkening evening sky!

For more information on the festival’s summer shows, contact the box office at 413-597-4701 or visit them online at  The Main Stage is located at 1000 Main Street in Williamstown, MA.

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