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University Program

Shakespeare at Winedale offers both a summer and spring course. See below for information about how to apply or fill out a form to let us know you're interested!

College of Liberal Arts

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Summer Class

Course Description

The Shakespeare at Winedale Summer Class is a course dedicated to the study of Shakespeare's plays through performance. This course offers an educational and theatrical experience of great intensity, as well as a unique opportunity for group interaction and self-exploration, to students from any discipline. The program is open to students of all majors. The first part of the course is an individual study, correspondence, conference course (E678a) preparing the student through reading of the texts, source materials, scholarship, and criticism. The second part of the course (E678b) is taken in residence at the 250-acre University of Texas Winedale Historical Center, near Round Top, Texas.

At Winedale, students live and work in a peaceful pastoral setting and perform in a century-old German hay barn that has been converted into an Elizabethan-style theatre. The isolated wooded landscape provides a special kind of magic and a uniquely focused intensity for the exploration of these supremely demanding plays. Students study Shakespeare 15-18 hours a day, seven days a week, in the 1880 Theatre Barn. The summer concludes with 24 public performances of the plays studied and a two week touring residency.

Shakespeare at Winedale is intended for students from all disciplines who are prepared to take risks and commit themselves to a creatively and intellectually demanding style of performance. Application is by interview, not audition, and special consideration is given to students who have never performed before. Students from any college or university will be considered, with some preference given to undergraduates. The keys to success at Winedale are a fertile imagination, an eagerness to learn, a willingness to play, and a high level of dedication and stamina.

How to Apply

If you are interested in applying, please fill out this form.

The Summer 2023 application will be availble during the spring semester of 2023. Please check back then.

A formal application for Shakespeare at Winedale consists of: (1) a completed application form accompanied by (2) a three-page essay addressing your personal history and your interest in Shakespeare at Winedale.  Once we have the application, we will e-mail information about your interviews.

Applications for the summer class are due on March 5.

When complete, please email to shakespeare@austin.utexas.edu or hand deliver to CAL 302.

The 2022 Summer Class studied Much Ado About Nothing, The Two Noble Kinsmen, and The Winter's Tale. Please check back next semster to see what plays students will study in 2023.

College of Liberal Arts

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Spring Class

Course Description 

This course explores Shakespeare's plays through performance. We will spend every class period looking in detail at Shakespeare's texts, at the interpretive challenges they present, and at the way performance choices contribute to their meaning. We will consider the original circumstances of their performance, their subsequent history on stage and film, and the critical controversies they have occasioned. Above all, we will explore them in action, through our own creative work, both in the classroom and in the theatre barn at Winedale. The course is designed for students with an interest in Shakespeare and a willingness to perform in front of others. Previous experience with acting is not necessary.

2022 Spring Class Details

This spring the course will explore Shakespeare from a global perspective and will culminate in public performances. We will be working in partnership with a class at the University of the Witwatersrand (Wits), South Africa, as part of the Texas Global program.  Some of the course meetings will be online sessions with the students at Wits; otherwise the course will be in-person insofar as the COVID situation allows.

We will be responsive to UT safely protocols, but the plan is for us to spend three weekends at The University of Texas Winedale Historical Center. These sessions at Winedale are required; they are the most important part of the course.

Those weekends are

  • February 25 - 27
  • March 25 - 27
  • April 28 - May 1

During these weekends, you will be working long hours on the play, from early morning to late at night. You should be prepared for this commitment before you register. The course will conclude with public performances in the Winedale Theatre Barn. In the 2021 spring semester, the Shakespeare at Winedale Spring Class performed The Tempest at the Winedale Theatre Barn and on UT campus. Click here for more information about these performances.

How to Apply

If you are interested in applying, please fill out this form.

Applications are due October 21, 2022.

Questions? Email shakespeare@austin.utexas.edu.