Shakespeare & Company, Inc.

Rating: 4.94 stars   391 reviews

Issues: Arts & Culture

Location: 70 Kemble Street Lenox MA 01240 USA

Mission: Founded in 1978, Shakespeare & Company aspires to create a theatre of unprecedented excellence rooted in the classical ideals of inquiry, balance and harmony; a company that performs as the Elizabethans did -- in love with poetry, physical prowess and the mysteries of the universe. With a core of over 150 artists, the company performs Shakespeare, generating opportunities for collaboration between actors, directors and designers of all races, nationalities and backgrounds. S&Co provides original, in-depth, classical training and performance methods. S&Co also develops and produces new plays of social and political significance. Shakespeare & Company's education programs inspire a new generation of students and scholars to discover the resonance of Shakespeare's truths in the everyday world, demonstrating the influence that classical theatre can have within a community.
2011 Top-Rated Nonprofit
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EIN 04-2666826
413-637-1199
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Community Reviews

Rating: 5 stars  

Shakespeare & Company continues with marvelous productions that are entertaining, understandable and educational. See my last year's review for additional comments based on our 33-34 years of attending.

Was your donation impactful?

Likely

How likely is it that you would recommend that a friend donate to this group?

Definitely

How likely are you to donate to this group again?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2011

 
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1 previous review
Rating: 5 stars  

My wife, son and I have been attending Shakespeare & Company performances since about their second season. We find the productions excellent with clear dialogue and action that conveys the meaning of language not always similar to our own and that propels the story. My son went to his first performance at about age 3 and was silent throughout as he was transfixed by the language and action. The productions are always wonderful.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

My experiences have been as a play attendee.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

I would allow them to proceed with more funding!

 
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Review from Guidestar
Rating: 5 stars  

The arts are crucial to our experience of being human. Shakespeare is at the center of our western tradition of literary and performance artistry. Shakespeare & Co. reinterprets the Bard's and related work for our new age. I continue to be thrilled by and learn so much from this most excellent troupe's work. Their mission is entertainment, philosophy and education - exploring what makes us human and how to be better at it. My 16 year old son still proclaims his Riotus Youth experiences as among the best of his life, and he is not an aspiring actor. Some of my family's most transforming times have been as audience members at S & Co. They are very worthy of continued support.

Was your donation impactful?

Definitely

How likely is it that you would recommend that a friend donate to this group?

Definitely

How likely are you to donate to this group again?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

 
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1 previous review
Rating: 5 stars  

My son and daughter both have participated in Riotus Youth over several years. Both enjoyed it immensely and learned so much about Shakespeare, acting and life. My son said his experiences there were among the best in his life. I also see most of the productions which are second to none and I spent many years in London seeing the RSC. This is an industrious and truely inspiring institution doing worthy work.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

seeing it from then outside and in. As a donor I see the behind the scenes effort and care taken to get it right and the emphasis on the next generation. As an audience member, I see top quality theatre that seems effortless, and "speaks" Shakespeare with a clarity that rewards Shakesperians and newcomers alike.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

give them more capital so they can do more work and fix up their premises.

 
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Review from Guidestar
Rating: 5 stars  

I have been lucky to have been able to attend Shakespeare & Company performances since before they moved from The Mount. I gladly donate each year as well. It is one of the highlights of my summer, and now fall and winter as well, to visit S&Co. for one of their fantastic performances. Their talent, professionalism, dedication and also humor show through in everything they do. For the best in art and culture, it is not to be missed!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

attending their theatrical performances, touring backstage and donating

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

maybe give the public a chance to request the season

 
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Review from Guidestar
Rating: 5 stars  

We have been attending performances at Shakespeare and Company for about ten years and have never been disappointed. The major productions are wonderful, but we especially enjoy the performances at the Bernstein which feature the younger members of the company or the intern program. Summer in the Berkshires is great, but we love having quality theatre during the rest of the year at Shakespeare and Company.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

Great theatre

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Let the pros keep doing the great job they do.

 
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Review from Guidestar
Rating: 5 stars  

Shakespeare and Company are successful in pursuit of (at least) two important goals. They produce and present excellent regional theater including wonderful productions of several Shakespeare plays each year. Perhaps more importantly, they are working to produce a new generation of actors and theater lovers. This work includes training for actors and the "fall festival" program where members of the resident company work with local high schools to cast and produce a Shakespeare play that is performed in the high school and then brought to the theater in Lenox, MA for a 2-3 day festival where each high school cast performs their work and shares in the love of the work and of theater. For the teens who participate the experience can be transforming, and generates a life long interest in the plays, the language and in theater generally. I have seen few regional theater companies who directly serve such a broad range of ages and audiences, and do so with outstanding results.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

I have attended many productions and encouraged my children to participate in their programs.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Create/extend some adult education programs - perhaps including lectures or scene labs.

Was your donation impactful?

Likely

How likely is it that you would recommend that a friend donate to this group?

Definitely

How likely are you to donate to this group again?

Likely

What specific problem, purpose, priority, or project prompted your gift?

Matching gift program.

Why did you make your donation at this time?

Financial crisis created shortage of funds for organization. I responded because I know how important this organization is for the community.

What would you tell others about this organization?

This is not only a great arts organization, but an important contributor to the education and well-being of young people in the community as well.

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2011

 
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Review from Guidestar
Rating: 5 stars  

I have been attending performances at S&Co since the mid-1970's when I stumbled upon the company accidentally while on a drive through New England. SInce then no summer feels complete without returning to drink from the well once again. This amazing company not only shines a unique and brilliant light on the Bard but gives voice to so many other wonderful authors and playwrights, often ones otherwise neglected. I think I keep going back because no other experience so helps me understand the way we humans relate to each other. These lessons are invaluable in my own life as I engage in the never-ending struggle to become a better person.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

expanding my understaning of the human condition.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

continue to expand connections with the Edith Wharton canon.

 
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Review from Guidestar
Rating: 5 stars  

The productions at Shakespeare and company and always rewarding and special. We are fortunate to have them in the Berkshires, adding to the cultural richness of the area.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

being in the audience.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

add performances.

 
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Review from Guidestar
Rating: 5 stars  

In addition to the great theater performances for visitors and locals, Shakespeare and Co. runs and absolutely outstanding educational program. The "Fall Festival" has to be seen to be believed. Its crazy to think that anyone could get 100's of teenagers eagerly packing themselves into a theater, hooting and hollering for Shakespeare, but they do exactly that year-after-year. 10 regional high schools, each having worked under the direction of a S&Co director, come together for a long weekend of non-stop Shakespeare, showing off their efforts and cheering on the other schools. Its hard to imagine this working, but it does and admirably so.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

Bringing theater alive for regional high school students.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Get them on a firm financial footing!

 
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Rating: 5 stars  

I have been a patron of and donor to Shakespeare and Company for more than 20 years. Always entertaining, S & Co is also highly educational because of the content of its programming.
S & Co is unique in it's ability to appeal to all ages, not just thru the extensive presentation of the plays of William Shakespeare, but also a liberal program of hilarious farce. There is nothing more rewarding than to hear the gleeful laughter of childern at theatre which can also be throughly enjoyed at an intellectual level by adults. Immediate examples would be the current production of "The Mystery of Irma Vep", the upcoming revival of the 2009 "The Hound of the Baskervilles" or last season's "The Real Inspector Hound".
S & Co's outreach education programs are the delight of young people and their parents throughout our region. These involve productions produced by the company starring students, acting classes in regional schools, court imposed "sentences" to study Shakespeare as the result of juvenile delinquency, and this years 30th anniversary tour of a special S & Co production of "Hamlet", featuring only six actors playing all the roles, to over 50 schools throughout New York State, New Jersey and New England.
I cannot think of an organization more deserving of your consideration.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

It's production facilities and throughout my community.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

I would see to it that it has sufficient funding to continue its good work.

 
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Review from Guidestar
Rating: 5 stars  

We've been coming to Lenox to see Shakespeare and Company for the past fourteen years and I have to say that we find there productions to incredibly well done. Every season we look forward to their Shakespeare plays as well as the other works that they present.
One of the things that we've come to enjoy is how accessible the actors are after the performances. Often times we have waited in the lobby after the show and spoken with them about how much we enjoyed seeing them perform.
I've also been very impressed with their commitment to education and to make Shakespeare's works so available to the public.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

It's educational efforts.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Figure out how to get them more publicity and funding.

Was your donation impactful?

Likely

How likely is it that you would recommend that a friend donate to this group?

Definitely

How likely are you to donate to this group again?

Definitely

What specific problem, purpose, priority, or project prompted your gift?

There continuous commitment to presenting Shakespeare's works and to education.

Why did you make your donation at this time?

Because I believe in what they do.

What would you tell others about this organization?

That they should see them perform.

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2011

 
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Review from Guidestar