For some students summer participation is not an option. During the academic year, Young Shakespeare Workshop offers after-school performance project residencies on-site at public schools. These residencies have been primarily with two low-income public high schools that have had their theatre departments limited and then eliminated, Cleveland HS. on south Beacon Hill and Chief Sealth International HS. in West Seattle. After-school performance projects are most often productions of plays requiring from 100 to 200 hours of rehearsal time. Schedules often begin with one or two days a week expanding to five days a week as performances near.
In February of 2012, we presented Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream with students from Cleveland HS, and in October of 2011 we produced Paul Zindel’s The Effect of Gamma Rays on Man-in-the-Moon Marigolds at Chief Sealth HS. Both residencies began preliminary rehearsals in the spring of 2011. In February of 2011, YSW produced, in partnership with Arts Corps, Tom Stoppard’s The Real Inspector Hound with Chief Sealth HS students, a number of which went on to act in Marigolds. In May 2010, YSW produced Hamlet with Cleveland HS students, many of which later performed in A Midsummer Night’s Dream in 2012. In 2013 students performed excerpts of Twelfth Night at the Seattle Art Museum in May of that year. In 2014 Cleveland students developed a deconstruction of Shakespeare’s original that we entitled Not As You Like It (pictured above). The actress playing Rosalind/Celia went on to perform in a full version of As You Like It as a returning student in 2016 and this in turn became a Revolving Company remount in 2017. In 2015 YSW first offered a for-credit semester long class at Cleveland H.S. that is now going into its sixth year. After-school projects now link together with the for-credit class to make productions as accessible to as many as possible. At Cleveland H.S. this has included productions of, King Lear 2017, Much Ado About Nothing 2018, The Merchant of Venice 2019, and King John 2020.
Over the last two plus decades Young Shakespeare Workshop has worked with many schools in Seattle and outlying areas.