Artistic Director Emily Mattina directs family-friendly adaptations of Shakespeare for summertime enjoyment. Ranging from ninety-minute to two-hour productions, they frequently feature a chorus of talented students alongside the professional cast, an Elizabethan feel to the costumes, a metaphorical setting, and an original music design to underscore and enhance the performance for a modern audience.
Shakesperience Summer Shakespeare History:
Shakespeare in Library Park (Waterbury), 2005-2014
Festival!Stratford (Stratford), 2009-2011
Vintage Shakesperience, (on the CT wine trail), 2010-2015
Shakespeare on the Shoreline (Guilford), 2012-present
Shakespeare in Hollow Park (Woodbury), 2016-present
Dr. David Richman returns to Shakesperience as Prospero! Featuring original music under the direction of Emily Mattina, Prospero lures his enemies to the island to which they exiled him. Replete with magic, romance, and hostile intentions, this last of Shakespeare's solo plays concludes with redemption and forgiveness.
Two gentlemen, best friends since youth, part ways in Verona as one leaves for Milan. In time, both fall in love with the same girl in Milan, leaving a jilted girlfriend from Verona to follow them in disguise. Music, unrequited love, requited love, friendship, fools, and dogs, this Shakespeare classic comedy has it all!
Twin boys are separated from their father for 25 years. Each has a servant, who is twin a twin to the other servant of the same name. They all converge on the same town, where their father has also arrived, condemned to death and determined to find his long-lost family before the end. It’s a common situation. Emily Mattina directs this wild confusion to its neat and happy conclusion.
Mattina's King Lear investigates the choices we make for our children and family as well as the overall welfare of children: physically, emotionally, and educationally. Explore the essence of blindness, both literally and figuratively, to our own actions, consequences and blessings.
Dr. David Richman, published author, actor, director, and professor at The University of New Hampshire, stars as King Lear. Dr. Richman’s real-life blindness gives a literal portrayal of the "blindness" in his character.
Benedick & Beatrice. Claudio & Hero. Follow the romantic entanglements of Don Pedro’s friends on his visit to the house of Leonato. Shakesperience Artistic Director Emily Mattina directed the comedy classic for Summer 2013.
Witness the two most famous warring families in history battle for the crown. Travel with the larger–than-life Richard III, Shakespeare’s villain king, as he plots his way to the crown against the backdrop of the Tower of London. Emily Mattina directs Richard III to feature actors from community to support her resident company of veteran professional resident artists and wraps a larger than life deck of playing cards into the costume and set designs.
Our designing and performing artists weave a tale replete with live music, fantasy, dreams, and love to create Emily Mattina's A Midsummer Night’s Dream as you've never seen it before. The Mechanicals set the scene as Puck prevails over this Arabian Nights inspired world, fairly coaxing, dancing, and forcing us through it, highlighting the pulse of life, the joy and trials of living, and the conflicts between head and heart.