Wharton Center hosts Shakespeare intensive for high school students
High school students across mid-Michigan had the opportunity to immerse themselves in an authentic theater experience. The Shakespeare Immersion Project hosted annually by the Wharton Center accepts students with various areas of interest to come together and learn about Shakespeare through performance.
From Oct. 26 to Oct. 31, students worked with Stratford actors to perform at the Wharton Center on Nov. 1.
Students collaborated with artists from the Stratford Festival Theatre Company, who specialize in classic and contemporary theater with an emphasis on Shakespeare. The Wharton Center’s growing relationship with the Stratford Festival allowed a 45-minute workshop to blossom into a 30-hour intensive with a student showcase at the end.
This workshop focuses on language exploration, text analysis and character development through reflective writing exercises and theater activities.
Participants study Shakespeare while gaining experience in voice and diction, analyzing texts and ensemble. While learning key theater skills, students work on a rendition of “Hamlet” to perform at the Wharton Center at the end of the intensive.
“The most important part of this experience is what the students learn from the process,” said Bert Goldstein, program coordinator for The High School Shakespeare Immersion Project. “The performance at the end is just icing on the cake.”
The high school Shakespeare Immersion Project chooses from a diverse pool of students from rural, suburban and urban areas of mid-Michigan to ensure that there are opportunities for all to learn about and appreciate Shakespeare. Some participants are the stars of their high school performances and some have never been on stage before.
Schools represented in this year’s program:
Insight School of Michigan – Lansing
Morey Flextech High School – Shepherd
Dansville High School – Dansville
Potterville High School – Potterville
St. Francis High School – Traverse City
Lansing Christian High School – Lansing
Charyl Stockwell Preparatory Academy – Brighton
Davison High School – Davison
East Lansing High School – East Lansing
Garber High School – Essexville
Heritage High School – Saginaw
Grand Ledge High School – Grand Ledge
Olivet High School – Olivet
Marshall High School – Marshall
New Lothrop High School – New Lothrop