Young Shakespeare Players East Integrates Lessons in History & Government with Theatre

Lend Us Your Ears!
Young Shakespeare Players East Performs
Julius Caesar at The Shea Theater In Turners Falls

Young Shakespeare Players East actors in early rehearsals for Julius Caesar. — For the YSP East actors, participating as an ensemble member in Julius Caesar is an opportunity to fully immerse themselves in the play as they learn not only about Shakespeare and ancient Rome, but also about the role of politics, history, and government. For audiences this is an opportunity to experience the beauty of Shakespeare’s language and the tragedy and intrigue of ancient Rome as staged by a group of dedicated and talented young actors.

The Young Shakespeare Players (YSP) East, a non-profit youth theater program located in Turners Falls, MA, will present its production of the full length version of William Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar on Saturday May 9 & Sunday May 10, 2015 at 12noon and 6pm at The Shea Theater (71 Avenue A) in Turners Falls, MA. All performances are free and open to the public. YSP East encourages people of all ages to attend.

Young Shakespeare Players (YSP) was founded in 1980 by Richard DiPrima in Madison, Wisconsin, and YSP East is proud to be the first ‘chapter’ of YSP outside of Madison and to make Turners Falls and the Shea Theater its new home. The program gives young people ages 7-18 the opportunity to perform full-length, original works of Shakespeare.  There are no auditions or rejections. Every young person who participates receives one or more substantial speaking roles.

YSP East is excited to present its production of William Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar on May 9 & 10, 2015, at the Shea Theater in Turners Falls. Julius Caesar addresses timeless themes such as conspiracy, democracy, liberty, corruption, ambition and tyranny. The actors of Young Shakespeare Players East will re-create one of the most famous and important moments in world history — by performing, uncut, one of the most famous and important plays in world history.

Shakespeare created many memorable scenes and lines in Julius Caesar, and audiences will recognize them as the YSP East players perform such dramatic scenes as the assassination of Caesar on the steps of the Roman Senate, and Antony’s famous speech, “Friends, Romans, countrymen, lend me your ears;…” 

There are two casts performing Julius Caesar, each with 12 actors, and they are involved in in every aspect of the production.  In addition to acting, the participants provide input into casting, provide backstage technical support, and help direct productions. YSP East is inspiring young people in the region to fall in love with the works of Shakespeare, and find their voice through their immersion in classical theater.

If you care about our language, our history, our art, our shared humanity, our young people and indeed, our future, then come to the Shea Theater on May 9 and 10, 2015 to experience this timeless, riveting play. Admission is FREE and open to the public, and there are concessions available for sale. All proceeds will directly benefit the Young Shakespeare Players East Scholarship Fund.  So, come hungry! Run time is approximately 2 hours and 40 minutes with two intermissions.  No reservations required.

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– Submitted by Suzanne Rubinstein

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