Connecticut Free Shakespeare empowers a team of performance and technical apprentices each summer in every aspect of the theater-making process. The apprentices work alongside professionals in the industry to ensure an extraordinary learning experience.
CFS understudy apprentices are non-union, up-and-coming professional actors that have degrees or are pursuing degrees in theater performance.
CFS understudies are assigned one or two principal roles, filled by AEA Union actors, that they will shadow over the course of the rehearsal process. All lines must be memorized for rehearsal, day one. At the end of the summer session, the apprentices will have a chance to perform their rendition of the summer production for their colleagues and family.
In partnership with The Workplace, Connecticut Free Shakespeare offers internships for 12 inner-city Bridgeport high school students and young adults. These youngsters participate in all aspects of the technical side of production, including set design and backstage work.
After 15 years, this program has become a highly-regarded educational program because it provides intensive artistic experiences to students who might otherwise lack this opportunity. We provide a point of entry into the theatrical process to students of all ages, backgrounds and life experiences. It's an opportunity to grasp theater firsthand—with professional actors and technical staff—not just by passively watching, but actively doing. Several of our alumni have gone on to professional achievement in lighting and costume design.
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