Build confidence and expand creativity with the ultimate team sport: Theatre.

Offered in partnership with City of Staunton Parks and Recreation.

With Shakespeare’s text as our touchstone and his technology as our laboratory, the Drama Club meets once a week in 12-week terms to explore Shakespeare’s wordcraft and stagecraft through play, building confidence and expanding creativity by working together to craft and rehearse a final performance of Shakespearean scenes at the Blackfriars Playhouse. Included in the cost of the Drama Club is a ticket for each participant to join the group on a field trip to the Blackfriars Playhouse.

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The current cycle of Drama Club is FULL. Please check back in the Spring!



Fall 2023 CYCLE

September 10 – December 3, 2023 | Sundays, 1:00-3:00pm

Play: Much Ado about Nothing

Playhouse field trip: Saturday, October 14 @ 1:45pm
Dress Rehearsal: Saturday, November 18 @ 9am-12pm
Final Performance: Saturday, Dec 2 @ 8pm

Learning outcomes

Drama Club introduces participants to the vocabulary of theatre, generally (things like “blocking” and “stage right/left”) as well as Shakespeare’s language, specifically (why do they talk like that?).

Participants gain all the benefits of theatrical training: greater collaborative skills, enhanced creative and critical thinking, increased awareness of physicality and movement, personal responsibility, and group camaraderie (to name a few). Specifically, they learn how to work together to put on a play and gain valuable performance experience in doing so. Making theatre isn’t just about memorizing lines and writing down blocking: it’s about knowing when to lead and how to follow, listening actively and responding genuinely, taking care of yourself and your teammates, and working together on a project that will always be greater than the sum of its parts.

Participants also gain an advanced, early understanding of Shakespeare—hopefully before they encounter his plays in an academic environment. The objective of Drama Club is to foster a lifelong love of theatre in general and Shakespeare in particular. Available evidence suggests early exposure (before the onset of “Shakesfear” in high school) to be the best way to achieve that objective.

Drama Club meets weekly at the Nelson Street Center (900 Nelson Street, at the corner of Liberty and Nelson streets) in downtown Staunton, VA.

Drama Club meets on Sundays from 1-3PM, with some special meetings on Saturdays. Sunday meetings extend to 1-4PM for the final month of the cycle. Full schedule can be found here.

Drama Club is open to budding thespians ages 8-15.

Enroll in Drama Club through Staunton Parks & Recreation Department.

Register Now

The current cycle of Drama Club is FULL. Please check back in the Spring!

Drama Club enrollment costs $185 per participant and includes 12-15 weeks of club meetings and a ticket to a performance at the American Shakespeare Center’s Blackfriars Playhouse.

Register Now

The current cycle of Drama Club is FULL. Please check back in the Spring!

Syllabus subject to change.


The current cycle of Drama Club is FULL. Please check back in the Spring!

Register Now

rehearsal schedule – FALL 2023 cycle

  • Sunday, September 10: Welcome to Club (Nelson Street, 1-3PM)
    • Icebreakers, introductions, overview of Club goals and schedule
  • Sunday, September 17: Play/Audition Prep (Nelson Street, 1-3PM)
    • Introduction to our play and preparation for Auditions
  • Sunday, September 24: Auditions! (Nelson Street, 1-3PM)
    • Attendance at this Sunday’s auditions is mandatory for all clubbers. If your clubber needs to miss the auditions for any reason, please contact me ASAP to make alternate arrangements.
  • Sunday, October 1: Rehearsal (Nelson Street, 1-3PM)
  • Sunday, October 8: Rehearsal (Nelson Street, 1-3PM)
  • Saturday, October 14: Field Trip (Blackfriars Playhouse, 1:45-4:30pm)
    • We will be attending the Fall 2023 production of Much Ado about Nothing at the Blackfriars Playhouse.
    • Please plan to drop your clubber off at the Blackfriars Playhouse (10 S Market Street) at 1:45pm and pick them up from the Playhouse after the show, which should conclude no later than 4:30pm.
    • Tickets for each clubber are included in the cost of registration.
    • Parents & siblings may purchase additional tickets if they would like to accompany Drama Club on our field trip.
  • Sunday, October 15: Rehearsal (Nelson Street, 1-3PM)
  • Sunday, October 22: Rehearsal (Nelson Street, 1-3PM)
  • Sunday, October 29: Rehearsal (Nelson Street, 1-4PM)
    • Club meetings move to three hours for the rest of the cycle.
  • Sunday, November 5: Rehearsal (Nelson Street, 1-4PM)
  • Sunday, November 12: Rehearsal (Nelson Steet, 1-4PM)
  • Saturday, November 18: Playhouse Dress rehearsal (Blackfriars Playhouse, 9AM-12PM)
  • Sunday, November 19: Rehearsal (Nelson Street, 1-4PM)
  • Sunday, November 26: Rehearsal (Nelson Street, 1-4PM)
  • Saturday, December 2: Final Performance (Blackfriars Playhouse, 8PM)
    • Clubbers should arrive at the Blackfriars Playhouse in their black base costumes at 6pm.
    • The Playhouse will open for audience seating at around 7:30pm.
    • Drama Club’s performance is part of “Share the Light,” our annual Community Celebration, which also features short performances by students from the Silver Line Theatre Exchange and Staunton High School. 
      • Each performance will be ~30-45 mins long, with ~10-15 minute intermissions between each, and the whole thing should wrap up by 10pm.
      • Drama Club will perform first, and if you have to leave immediately afterwards we’ll understand, but we hope you’ll stay for the other students’ performances, as well.
  • Sunday, December 3: Optional wrap-up and Watch Party (Nelson Street, 1-3PM