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Oregon Shakespeare Festival gets NEA grant

Funds will support classroom programs for 25 schools in Oregon and California
 Posted: 2:00 AM October 27, 2012

The Oregon Shakespeare Festival was selected to participate in the 2012-13 Shakespeare for a New Generation program — an initiative sponsored by the National Endowment for the Arts in cooperation with Arts Midwest.

OSF is among 42 theatre companies to receive funding. OSF received $25,000 for 250 performances of five Shakespeare plays plus related classroom curricula and 69 actor workshops, post-show discussions, tours, prologues and teacher-training classes for more than 700 students in 25 Oregon and California schools, according an OSF press release.

The funding broadens OSF's work with these elementary, middle and high school students, who participate in School Visit Partnerships, the Bowmer Project for Student Playgoers and the Ashland Schools Project.

The 25 participating schools are in 17 communities in Oregon and five communities in Siskiyou and Alameda counties in California.

The five Shakespeare plays that students will attend are "Troilus and Cressida," "Henry V" and "As You Like It" in 2012, and "King Lear" and "The Taming of the Shrew" in 2013.

The grant will help OSF offer discounted performances and education activities to students from the 25 schools, as well as expand the distribution of theatre education materials to the schools and encourage participation by teachers in OSF's professional development programs, the release said.

School groups are seated with general audiences for all 11 main stage productions. OSF has no student-only performances. OSF education staff teaches students what to expect in the theatre and what is expected of them.

In 2011, more than half of visiting students also attended an OSF education event.

For a list of the 42 theatre companies selected to participate in Shakespeare for a New Generation for 2012-13, see

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