Unlocking Shakespeare through Performance

Intimidated by Shakespeare? Unsure of why Shakespeare continues to be such a dominant presence in contemporary theatre? Perhaps you have been involved in a Shakespearean production at school and are excited to learn more?

The Unlocking Shakespeare through Performance track will give the beginning actor the tools to not only decipher texts written over 400 years ago, but also the skills necessary to incorporate these discoveries on the stage. The track will uncover the universal truths found in Shakespeare’s plays through an immersive exploration of his works both on the page and on the stage and screen. Through textual analysis, the study of Shakespeare on film, voice and movement classes, and one-on-one acting coaching, Unlocking Shakespeare through Performance will encourage students to broaden their acting abilities and ease their anxieties when approaching Shakespeare—all while redefining what Shakespeare “means” to them individually.

The track will be composed of multiple sessions in scene study and analysis, elementary rhetoric and scansion, vocal techniques, movement for the actor, and afternoons spent in the rehearsal room directly engaging Shakespeare’s verse through performance.  Students’ acting work in the course will be presented to the general public at the conclusion of the program.

Academic Director


Scott Jackson is the Executive Director of Shakespeare at Notre Dame. In this position he provides executive oversight for the many Shakespeare-related programs housed at the University of Notre Dame, with a particular focus on engaging our local community through the works of William Shakespeare. Previously he served as Executive Director for the Fairbanks Shakespeare Theatre in Fairbanks, Alaska, where he produced and performed in outdoor Shakespeare productions staged under the midnight sun at venues throughout Alaska, and internationally for audiences around the globe (most notably at the VIII World Shakespeare Congress in Brisbane, Australia, and the Edinburgh Festival Fringe in Scotland). He also spent three years living and working in London as the Business and Legal Affairs Coordinator for Brighter Pictures (now a part of Endemol UK), one of the United Kingdom’s most successful independent film and television production companies. He holds a BA in Theatre from Indiana University/Bloomington, as well as intensive study in acting at the London Centre for Theatre Studies. Scott currently serves as the Treasurer of the Shakespeare Theatre Association and is an instructor of Acting Process at the University of Notre Dame.