Work: Meet Play(house)

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The partnership between Mary Baldwin and the American Shakespeare Center (ASC) is an ideal model of town-gown collaboration and so much more.  Both ASC and S&P are dedicated to invigorating the language and theatre of Shakespeare and his contemporaries for modern audiences.  This relationship puts students at the forefront of the field and connects them to a vibrant global network of Shakespearean scholarship and artistry.

Conveniently, the Blackfriars Playhouse — ASC’s home base and the world’s only authentic re-creation of Shakespeare’s indoor theatre — is just a few blocks from campus. On the broad stage surrounded by intricate woodwork, S&P students hone their acting, directing, costuming, and speaking skills while keeping Renaissance plays fresh and accessible to modern audiences. In addition, the playhouse is a destination for world-renowned Shakespearean scholars and theatre experts, who converge in Staunton every other fall for the weeklong Blackfriars Conference.

American Shakespeare Center at a Glance

  • Founded in 1988; training teachers of Shakespeare since 1992
  • Professional resident company and separate road troupe with an annual four-play repertory
  • Touring troupe is America’s most traveled Shakespeare company: 47 states and five countries to date
  • During the Actors’ Renaissance Season, veteran ASC actors mount full-length productions in a matter of days, striving to reproduce the energy and excitement of Renaissance theatre
  • Extensive educational outreach with workshops and seminars for teens, teachers, and scholars, including the annual American Shakespeare Center Theatre Camp.