shakespeare made simple
Our Shakespeare Made Simple program has been highly successful with both teachers and children, serving over 10,000 middle and high school students since 1991. NPT's singular approach to teaching and performing Shakespeare is grounded in the text and delivered in a highly active and interactive style. Our focus on the text—and clues embedded in the structure and sounds—rather than the plots, give teachers and students the tools to understand and USE the power of the spoken word, in all aspects of their lives. Comprehensive Classroom packets are provided for ALL events which include a synopsis, study guide, vocabulary exercises, follow-up questions and information on Elizabethan acting conventions.
To see an example of the material covered in our Shakespeare Made Simple program, feel free to download a FREE copy of our Guide to Shakespeare’s Verse!
A taste of Shakespeare Made Simple
Motley, Mad and Marriage-minded: A Shakespeare Vaudeville
A FUN variety show format of scenes, monologues, and sayings to introduce kids to Shakespeare and get them excited about learning more about his plays! The show also features Cole Porter’s “Brush Up Your Shakespeare” in opening and closing production numbers that teach kids some of the many words and phrases from Shakespeare’s plays that have been incorporated into the English language and that we now use every day. Performance runs 60 minutes; a post-show Q&A can be added.
4th -12th grades
Shakespeare’s Fools, Leading Ladies, Villains
Students are at the center of the action in this unique introduction to Shakespeare in performance. The three shows in the series feature famous scenes and archetypal characters from Romeo & Juliet, Macbeth, As You Like It, Othello, Taming of the Shrew, 12th Night, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Two Gentlemen of Verona, among other plays. Choose one or all. Performances run 60 minutes with 30-minute post-performance workshop.
Kids Speak Shakespeare
Shakespeare as mystery writer? Young people use famous monologues to find clues in the language that serve as a map to discover meaning and the power of speaking the text out loud. Kids overcome their fears and intimidation and take ownership of Shakespeare’s words. 45-minutes, 4th-12th Grades.
The Play’s The Thing
Workshops focus on specific plays through examination of keys scenes and monologues that reveal themes and the course of the action. Professional text analysis methods give kids the tools they need to read the full play and have fun discovering meaning and motivation on their own. 90 minutes to 2 hours.
Two Hour’s Traffic
Performances of full plays in two hours or less are offered in the Fall and Spring. In addition to a thorough study of the text, NPT also applies research from historical and source material to its productions, creating a vibrant, three-dimensional world that deepens our understanding of human behavior across time. Special preparatory workshops can also be scheduled. 6th-12th Grades (PHOTO, NPT actors talk to kids after a performance of Macbeth.)
All the World’s A Stage
In-depth residencies combine writing, performance and text analysis designed to meet individual curriculum needs. 10-20 sessions, up to 3 classes per day. Can focus on a single play or scenes from different plays. A student-performance option can also be negotiated. 5th-12th Grades.
Check out our other programs!
What Educators are Saying About shakespeare made simple
The multi-cultural staff of actors is quite important to youngsters. NPT involves the audience and closely interacts with the kids. They never lose interest. Karen Fogler, Hunter College Elementary School
“Excellent performance and the students were able to fully understand characters & plot.” D. DiMatteo, JHS 185
“New Perspectives was flawlessly entertaining. We experienced highly professional performances in an intimate, “hands-on” setting, which allowed my kids to feel some ownership of the Shakespearean text. You went a long way in taking the fear out of Shakespeare for my students. These inner-city, South Bronx “thugs” left the theatre quoting Lady Anne from Richard III! I’m grateful for any opportunity to see them recognize their own humanity and intellect—New Perspectives brought that out.” E. Wylie, Wings Academy
“We were deeply moved by your show. The best, most riveting performance for a school audience that I have ever seen!” B. Rosenzweig, Auxiliary Services to High Schools