DENVER (CBS4) – In 1599, in the play “As You Like It,” William Shakespeare wrote the line “All the world’s a stage.” That line holds true for the Denver Center for the Performing Art’s Education program, Shakespeare in the Parking Lot.
“Shakespeare in the Parking Lot goes out to schools, and community centers, and community areas to perform Shakespeare. We really wanted students to have the opportunity to see Shakespeare live as they’re studying Shakespeare,” said Allison Watrous, Director of Education at the Denver Center for the Performing Arts.
The asphalt and parked cars set the stage for scenes from “Romeo & Juliet” and “A Midsummer Night’s Dream,” standard fair in school curricula. The actors wear street clothes, but speak the language of 400 years ago.
“For students to have the opportunity to see it performed helps them understand it, and also to really connect it to why we are still performing Shakespeare today. It’s so connected to the human experience, and the universals, and it can unpack incredible conversations in the classroom,” Watrous told CBS4.
Anyone who’s struggled with Shakespeare on the page can understand how even the simplest of performances can make it a living and relatable experience. The parking lot performances are paired with in-class workshops for middle and high school students.
Shakespeare in the Parking Lot returns to schools in April & May, and has community performances later this spring.