Welcome To Shakespeare In Italy

About Us

Shakespeare in Italy is a charity dedicated to advancing the arts, specifically drama, for the benefit of all.

Our aim is to enliven the experience of Shakespeare’s Italian plays with an exciting mix of British realism and Italian intensity while finding new audiences especially among those for whom English is their second or third language.

We will explore this through performances in the UK, Italy and beyond, as well as via a programme of education and outreach.

Two former Royal Shakespeare Company actors, Julian Curry and Mary Chater in association with the Italian theatre manager, Sandro Pascucci,  founded the company which is managed by a board of Trustees. Our patrons are Ralph Fiennes, Ian McKellen and Judi Dench.

Any project devoted to the works of Shakespeare has my enthusiastic support. Shakespeare in Italy has already established its credentials and a determination to explore and examine the plays from a fresh perspective. I wish the Company every possible luck for its future.

Ian McKellen

Shakespeare has always been my passion. Italy is a passion of mine too. This wonderful company has combined them both, and I wish them every success.

Judi Dench

Italy, or the idea of Italy, had a strong hold on Shakespeare's imagination and I have been privileged to perform in some of his Italian plays. I am pleased to be patron of this new company, Shakespeare in Italy, which aims to explore and further illuminate these magnificent works.

Ralph Fiennes
The Shakespeare in Italy leader proposed some scenes from 'A Midsummer Night's Dream' and ' The London Sketch.' This helped the students to work in an unusual and stimulating way, away from their normal curriculum, which doesn't usually include theatrical perfomances and encouraged them to approach language learning in a quite different manner.

Silvia Moscioni, G Celli technical school, Cagli (PU) Marche

Latest News

Our #AssociateArtist Lucy Bailey directs #MuchAdoAboutNothing @The_Globe

Acclaimed director Lucy Bailey has a slew of excellent reviews for her new production that opened at the beginning of May - please see some below

Mary Chater 0 261





Summer school in #Cagli theatre, (Pesaro Urbino) Marche with top directors Chris Luscombe and Vik Sivalingam

We're delighted that AT LAST we can hold another of our exceptional summer schools in Italy. We will work on The Comedy of Errors and Much Ado About Nothing

Mary Chater 0 360

Hot off the press - 23 people coming this year from India, Bangladesh, Iraq, New Zealand, Portugal, Holland, Italy, Ireland and England aged 21 - 80 including two young actresses graduating from the Institute for Contemporary Theatre in Brighton who have been awarded bursaries to attend the course.

WELCOME to our first summer school in Italy since 2019 when we were in Florence.

This year the plays chosen are lighter weight than some because after two years of Covid we want to let our hair down! Laughter is the name of the game.

Most participants come for both modules but some people attend only one. Please ask the cost for one play module.

The Trustees offer bursaries for students - at previous summer schools we've awarded bursaries to participants from Mexico, Iraq, Ireland and England.

Anyone aged 18 and upwards from anywhere in the world is welcome to attend as long as they speak English fluently.

Accommodation is at Hotel Pineta - https://ie.hotels.com/ho1107409632/hotel-pineta-cagli-italy/

or Casa Lapis which are apartments to share - http://www.casalapis.com/

Both places are in the centre of town, close to the theatre.

We advise people to use the Arden edition of each play if possible.

NB -  the workshops are from an actor's point of view, this is NOT an academic course. We work hard and have plenty of fun too!

Short film about Cagli theatre and area has been added below.

The dates are - 14th July arrival day with welcome aperitivo and group dinner.

15, 16, 17 The Comedy of Errors with Chris Luscombe in Cagli theatre.

18 is a free day with a trip to Gubbio and the Roman Amphitheatre.

19, 20, 21 Much Ado About Nothing with Vik Sivalingam in Cagli theatre. We have a farewell group dinner on 21st.

22nd July departure day.

Both group dinners are at La Gioconda in centre of Cagli where they make mouth watering dishes, some with black and white truffles. https://www.tripadvisor.com/Restaurant_Review-g1005937-d2361077-Reviews-La_Gioconda_Ristorante-Cagli_Pro

How to get to Cagli - sustainable travel on the train to Bologna Centrale then train down the Adriatic coast to Fano and a group taxi with other participants to Cagli. Or fly to Bologna airport then Marconi Express transit to train station from airport, train to Fano and share taxi to Cagli. Fly to Ancona airport and taxi to Cagli. 

'I always crave the opportunity to do theatre work with people for whom drama is a passion and not just a hobby. That’s why I am so very pleased to have discovered Shakespeare in Italy.' Jennifer Major, New Zealand

'I discovered Shakespeare in Italy in 2017 on a glorious summer School in Padua, then returned to Calabria in 2018. I joined the London Summer School last year and was determined to try and join everyone in Cagli, so am hugely looking forward to catching up with a few old, familiar faces and meeting some new ones.' Elizabeth Ollier, London 


Students' quotes from St Marylebone C of E school, W1 having seen our first production 'A Merchant of Venice' in Nov/ Dec @Playground W10

PLUS an enthusiastic testimonial from Hannah Jeens, Head of English

Mary Chater 0 392

Testimonial – Hannah Jeens, Head of English, St Marylebone School

A Merchant of Venice project with Shakespeare in Italy

I feel extremely fortunate to have had the experience provided to us by Shakespeare in Italy with their outreach programme based around their production “A Merchant of Venice”. At every turn, they offered us more than we expected and were accommodating of changes necessitated by school logistics, in this very challenging time.

This year, following lockdowns and remote learning, providing enrichment opportunities beyond the classroom has felt like one of our more pressing educational responsibilities and needs. We were consequently delighted when Shakespeare in Italy were able to offer us a workshop in school for every single student in our Year 8 cohort, free tickets to a performance of a play we were studying, free programmes and a question-and-answer session with the actors. It was an incredible opportunity for our students; for many it was their first trip to a theatre and opened their eyes to new possibilities of learning.

They were particularly thrilled by the interactions with the actors. This was evident by the wide range of questions they asked during the question-and-answer session. They were keen to know all sorts of things both about being an actor and about the text itself, which is an experience they could never have realised in the classroom alone. The students also loved the fact that the actress playing Portia took part in their workshop. Even though I am sure their English teachers could have answered the same questions about Portia, it was much more interesting for them to speak to an actor!

I was very interested to see how the students lapped up the information they got from their workshops. I am grateful to Nikki Pearson for her extensive research and the depth of thought that went into the material. The students in my class in particular were so interested in the ways dogs were perceived in Elizabethan England, and it was thrilling to see them using this information to support their points about Shylock’s language both in class discussion and later on in their written work. Of course, not only did this enhance their English and drama studies but opened their minds to living history and hopefully other subject teachers will also gained benefits from these activities.

Teaching The Merchant of Venice in Year 8 is a very rewarding and interesting unit, but it was definitely greatly enhanced this year by the experiences provided by Shakespeare in Italy. We only study four scenes of the play in class, as our teaching is focused on the interaction between Shylock and Antonio. It was fantastic for the students to then be able to see the rest of the play live (in a helpfully abridged version), and so enrich their understanding of how the part they know so well connects to the rest of the text. 

I would like to thank Shakespeare in Italy for their generosity with their time and expertise, and for bringing Shakespeare to life so vividly, both as a text and as a part of the theatrical profession, for our students who have been starved of such experiences in recent years. 

Here is a small selection of what the students had to say:


"It was very interesting to see how the actors viewed their characters. It was a very fun experience." (L)


"I liked how they interpreted the play in their own way and modernised it" (A)


Registered Charity Number 1172308 © Shakespeare in Italy 2022

Website and Membership Services provided by SubscriberCRM