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.

BREAKING NEWS: We bring our acclaimed Summer School to West London, The Playground Theatre, 14-19 June 2021, with leading Directors, Actors & Practitioners. Visit our News or Education Sections for more information and to book. 

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

Actress #RakieAyola cites Shakespeare in Italy's Associate Artist Bill Alexander as her #mentor

The Anthony and Noughts & Crosses star now in #BBC1 crimer thriller #ThePact was interviewed in recent Financial Times article by Hester Lacey.

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Film, theatre and television actor #RakieAyola said in a recent interview in the Financial Times that Bill Alexander was her mentor and set her love of Shakespeare.

#RSCHonoraryAssociateArtist Bill is an Associate Director with Shakespeare in Italy. We are planning to stage his abridged six-character version called A Merchant of Venice later this year at The Playground Theatre in London W10.

Rakie, who recently starred in the ITV drama #Grace was named best female actor in the #2020BlackBritishTheatreAwards for her performance in On Bear Ridge. Her other television appearances have included Anthony and Noughts & Crosses.

In the interview she says: “Director Bill Alexander, who I did a lot of plays with in the 1990s set my love of Shakespeare.” She also describes her drama teacher at school and head of studies at the Welsh College of Music and Drama, together with actor girlfriends in a creative network as being mentors.

She adds further: “I’d love to do a costume drama. In period drama you can be larger and fruitier and juicier!”

It was 30 years ago, she says, that she wrote to the head of drama at ITV and said “why do I never see black people in your dramas?” He gave her one line and it got her a job. “I've been running on that ever since. Saying the thing that people want to say, but don’t, for fear of never working again.”

Rakie stars in the #BBC1 crime thriller #ThePact which begins on Monday May 17th.

Corona Virus - a Great British Farce by Mark Daniels - absurdist, bravura black comedy that won our playwriting competition

See video below of Mark's winning entry - enjoy!

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Actors #LachlanForlong and #MartinNicholls star in Mark Daniel's comedy - pls see below

#blackcomedy #farce #twohander #upandcomingplaywright #upandcomingcomedian

#Welcome e #benvenuto! - the theatre director #IqbalKhan joins us at Shakespeare in Italy as a new #Trustee - Hooray!

We're thrilled to have Iqbal on the Board - he'll make an invaluable contribution given his acclaimed background as a director - please see below for his biog.

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Iqbal Khan is a freelance Theatre Director.

Productions at the RSC include acclaimed versions of Tartuffe, Antony and Cleopatra, Othello and Much Ado About Nothing (also the West End).

Other work includes Educating Rita, Oleanna, Rafta Rafta, Perfect Days & Beautiful Thing (Bolton Octagon)

Macbeth (Shakespeare’s Globe); Shakespeare at the Bowl (collaboration between LA Philharmonic & BBCSO at the Hollywood Bowl & Barbican); The Wildman of the West Indies (Donizetti opera for ETO, Hackney Empire & National Tour); Treemonisha (Pegasus Opera); The Importance of Being Earnest:The Musical (Riverside Studios)

The Killing of Sister George (West End); Broken Glass (Tricycle/West End); A Slight Ache & Landscape (National Theatre);

Snookered (Tamasha/Oldham Coliseum/Bush/UK tour): A Christmas Carol/ Romeo & Juliet/ The Tempest/ Merchant of Venice (Box Clever); East is East (Birmingham Rep); The Last Photograph (Edinburgh Festival); Otello (Birmingham Opera Company); Simply Cinderella (Curve); Too Close to Home (Lyric Hammersmith/Library Theatre); Madama Butterfly (Lyric Hammersmith/Minack)

Iqbal has worked extensively in Drama Schools including RWCMD, LAMDA, RADA & BSD. He has directed in Paris, Japan (awarded a year long prestigious fellowship, based in Tokyo), he’s had residencies and delivered lectures at Michigan State, La Fayette, Nanjing, and, most recently, was the Michael Douglas Visiting Artist at UC Santa Barbara.

Iqbal has an MA (Distinction) in Theatre Directing from Middlesex University, was awarded a RYTDS bursary, based at Leicester Haymarket, trained on the National Theatre Studio directors’ course and was, most recently, made an Honorary Doctor of Arts by De Montfort University.

Please see quote from Iqbal below.
#RSC #Tartuffe #BoltonOctagon #ShakespearesGlobe #HackneyEmpire #theatredirector #RWCMD #LAMDA #RADA #BSD #BirminghamRep #BoxCleverTheatre Co