"How is doing Shakespeare different from rehearsing a modern play?"
"How can I speak that language and still be authentic on stage?"
"Will Shakespeare training make me a better camera actor/storyteller/improv artist?"
Come join us as we explore these questions and more.
Playing Shakespeare is an odyssey for the actor. It builds powerful skills -- in imagination, emotional range, speech, presence & energy -- that will serve us all our lives with whatever type of acting we choose to focus on. We become more creative in rehearsal -- more specific, generous, and expressive in performance.
Choose a single three-hour workshop, a weekend intensive, or an ongoing session that runs for a semester or longer.
In a three-hour workshop, you’ll get a solid introduction to the basics of speaking verse; spotting the playwright’s directions; recognizing 'simple' and 'complex' lines; and developing an authentic, full-body response to the language.
In a longer class, we’ll discover more about how to make the verse work for us, plus we'll add punctuation magic and the daredevil technique of cue-scripting: working as Shakespeare’s own company did, rehearsing just your own lines and never hearing the whole play until you’re actually in front of an audience.
Over a semester or a quarter, we’ll have time to dig more deeply into all these areas, plus we’ll do monologues and scene work or rehearse a full production.
I'll tailor your workshop to fit your group's particular needs and interests. No previous experience is required. (Just curiosity and a willingness to play.)
I'm also available for private coaching.
"As a beginner, I was kind of expecting Shakespeare = hard work. I had NO IDEA this class was going to be such a blast! Freya, you opened up a whole new world of experience and imagination! Thank you!" -Bonnie Hunt, 2005 workshop participant, San Francisco
ABOUT FREYA SHIPLEYFreya graduated from the classical acting program at the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art (LAMDA), and has performed and directed at theatres across the UK and US. She has been teaching Shakespeare for actors since 1998. She is a member of UK Actors' Equity and has a master's degree in British history from the University of St. Andrews, Scotland. She lives in the San Francisco Bay Area.
Freya's work is based on principles developed by (among others) John Barton and members of the Original Shakespeare Company, London. Her students dig deeply into text analysis, exploring the connection between Shakespeare's language and real action, reaction, movement, and relationship on stage.
Freya has brought this work to many theatres and training programs, including Shakespeare’s Globe Education (London), The Artemis Project (London), the British-American Drama Academy (BADA), Moray Theatre (Edinburgh), The American School in Surrey (UK), the California Institute of Technology, the Claremont Colleges, Shakespeare Santa Cruz (California), Indiana Repertory Theatre (Indiana), and more.