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Inspired by Shakespeare

Playwrights and theatre companies have re-envisioned Shakespeare's plots and characters for completely different contexts, sometimes combining characters from multiple plays together, carrying a story forward or backward, or designing Theatre for Young Audiences (TYA). 

Scroll down or press these links for productions Inspired by Shakespeare and Theatre for Young Audiences.

Inspired by Shakespeare

1999 Theatre Rhinoceros

San Francisco, CA

Fed Up: A Cannibal's Own Story by Ricardo Bracho

(dir. Reginald McDonald)

Bracho's play takes on exploitation of queer men of color in this satiric play that includes elements from The Tempest.

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2004 Repertorio Español

New York, NY

The San Juan Shakespeare Company

by Eugenio Rodriguez

(dir. Alfredo Galvan)

Eugenio Rodriguez’s play involves a comedic backstage glimpse at a fictitious Nuyorican ensemble attempting to take on Shakespeare in order to win a monetary prize.  Through improvisation and rendering Richard III a comedy, the company find success through the creativity that stems from a lack of familiarity with (and reverence for) Shakespeare.

2012 Teatro Promoteo

Miami, FL

Mujeres de Shakespeare 
by Neher Jaqueline Briceño

(dir. Neher Jaqueline Briceño)

Briceño’s play had an entirely Latina cast and was written and entirely performed in Spanish. It subverts the male-dominated storylines of most of Shakespeare’s plays.  Also in 2012, they held a staged reading of Cuban-playwright Reinaldo Montero’s Liz, about the court of Queen Elizabeth I.

All images courtesy of Neher J. Briceño
All images courtesy of New Light Theater Project from their 2022 production at 59E59 Theaters

2018 The Parsnip Ship

Brooklyn, NY

I Wanna Fuck Like Romeo and Juliet

by Andrew Rincón

(dir. Blayze Teicher)

Rincón's fantastical play was first performed as an audio play in 2018 for The Parsnip Ship, which is available via the button below. The play involves a love story between two queer men of color that gets interrupted by the magical interference of Cupid and Valentine. 

2018 Pregones & R. Evolución Latina

New York, NY

To Be or Not To Be…. A Shakespearean Experience

a devised performance piece

(dir. Luis Salgado)

This devised dance and performance piece brought together performers from throughout New York and Latin America. For an excellent and thorough review, see José Solis' article in HowlRound.

All ephemera courtesy of R.Evolución Latina
All images courtesy of Neher J. Briceño

2019 Adriana Barraza Veritatem Theatre

Miami, FL

Shakespeare in Madness
by Neher Jacqueline Briceño

(dir. Neher Jacqueline Briceño)

Briceño's play was a praise of madness. As described by Briceño, "Mentally ill patients in Ward 305 prepare to compete and portray well-known characters from famed playwright William Shakespeare. They are torn between vulnerable and imperfect creatures but touched with a large dose of humor and humanity."

Theatre for Young Audiences

2005 Georgia Shakespeare

Atlanta, GA

Miguel's Shakespeare Adventure
by Allen O'Reilly

(dir. Allen O'Reilly)
Link to full article

Miguel's Shakespeare Adventure was staged at Georgia Shakespeare and Outrageous Fortune Theatre in El Paso.

Miguel's Shakespearean Adventure
Image courtesy of Allen O'Reilly
All images courtesy of NYU

2015 New Plays for Young Audiences at NYU

New York, NY

Forever Poppy
by José Cruz González

(dir. Laurie Woolery)

José Cruz González's play involves six actors each playing multiple roles. It was first workshopped in 2015 at NYU and in 2018 at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts as part of New Visions/New Voices.

All images courtesy of Diana Burbano

2017 Creede Repertory Theatre Headwaters New Play Festival 

Creede, CO

Caliban's Island

by Diana Burbano

(dir. Charlie Oates)

Diana Burbano's play for children includes elements from The Tempest and Twelfth Night with a main character named Vi and a gender-fluid Ariel-like fairy named Fluffy.

Caliban's Island is the subject of Burbano's essay in the edited collection, Shakespeare and Latinidad.

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