Shakespeare at Winedale

Shakespeare Ninjas Come to Winedale

Thu, May 31, 2012
Shakespeare Ninjas Come to Winedale
Shakespeare Ninja performance at the 2012 spring Fesitval of Play.

The "Shakespeare Ninjas" -- an ensemble of 10 middle and high school students from the Gonzales Youth Center in Gonzales, Texas -- will present a tapestry of scenes from Twelfth Night at 1:30 p.m. in the Winedale Theater Barn on Saturday, July 28 as part of the center’s annual visit to Winedale. The performance will precede the 2 p.m. performance of A Midsummer Night's Dream by the 2012 Shakespeare at Winedale summer class.

The Gonzales Youth Center, directed by Pat Anders, is an afterschool and summer program for disadvantaged youth in Gonzales and the surrounding rural area. Since 2010, the Shakespeare at Winedale Outreach program, in collaboration with Barbara Crozier of the Crystal Theater in Gonzales, has been working with the GYC to create an ensemble of students interested in studying Shakespeare through performance. The troupe, now directed by Ms. Crozier, also performed at this year’s spring Festival of Play at Winedale, the annual Winedale Outreach luncheon on the UT campus, and at several locations in Gonzales.

Since 2011, Shakespeare at Winedale founding director and Camp Shakespeare director Dr. James B. Ayres has been working with the Shakespeare Ninjas intensively on the language of Twelfth Night. Two of the Ninja founding members – Dillon Segundo and Johnny Palacios – attended Camp Shakespeare in the summer of 2011 and have since become articulate and confident leaders of the Ninja troupe. This summer, Delsia Maldonado of the Ninjas is attending Camp Shakespeare’s second session and performing in Macbeth

“For many of our students,” said GYC director Pat Anders, “this association with Shakespeare at Winedale Outreach provides a lifeline off the sidelines to which they have been relegated for most of their young lives. This is an extraordinary opportunity for our youth to be able to experience the thrill of performing the great works of Shakespeare under the skilled and caring tutelage of the Shakespeare at Winedale instructors.”

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