Some insist that Shakespeare's works must be seen in performance to be fully appreciated. Shakespeare wrote his plays, they argue, to be acted, heard and seen. Others prefer to savor his language in their minds and to appreciate the action, settings and costumes on the stages of their own imaginations. For those in in former category, the following venues offer some of the best productions of Shakespeare's works.
Folger Shakespeare Library Performances – Washington, D.C.
The Folger Shakespeare Library hosts a wide variety of events, performances, and activities, from theater to literary readings to family activities and more.
Shakespeare Theatre – Washington, D.C.
Shakespeare Theatre Company produces and presents the highest-quality classic theatre productions across genres, bringing them to vibrant life in a provocative, imaginative and accessible style. With Shakespeare at our core, we explore plays of national and international relevancy—those with profound themes, complex characters and heightened language—through a contemporary 21st century lens.
Old Globe – San Diego, California
The mission of The Old Globe is to preserve, strengthen, and advance American theatre by creating theatrical experiences of the highest professional standards; producing and presenting works of exceptional merit, designed to reach current and future audiences; ensuring diversity and balance in programming; and providing an environment for the growth and education of theatre professionals, audiences and the community at large.
Lake Tahoe Shakespeare Festival
Imagine your toes in the sand, a fantastic bottle of wine nearby, a gourmet meal in hand and first-class entertainment before you– all while basking in a perfect Lake Tahoe sunset with your friends and family. You™re not dreaming, you™re experiencing the enchantment of Lake Tahoe Shakespeare Festival at Sand Harbor at Lake Tahoe Nevada State Park.
Utah Shakespeare Festival – Cedar City, Utah
The Utah Shakespeare Festival presents life-affirming classic and contemporary plays in repertory, with Shakespeare as our cornerstone. These plays are enhanced by interactive festival experiences which entertain, enrich, and educate.
Oregon Shakespeare Festival – Ashland, Oregon
The Oregon Shakespeare Festival is a not-for-profit professional theatre founded in 1935. We have three theatres: our two indoor stages, the Angus Bowmer Theatre and the Thomas Theatre, and our flagship outdoor Allen Elizabethan Theatre. We offer 11 different plays that include three or four by Shakespeare and seven by other classic writers, as well as modern and contemporary work and world premieres.
Stratford Festival – Ontario, Canada
Our work goes beyond stage productions and Forum events. We create and develop new plays (Canadian premiers and new translations); host training programs that help theatre artists hone their skills; and forge a unique, creative partnership with the town of Suchitoto in El Salvador.
Hudson Valley Shakespeare Festival
“Celebrating its 31st season in 2017, Hudson Valley Shakespeare Festival (HVSF) is a critically acclaimed (The New York Times, The New Yorker, The Wall Street Journal), professional, non-profit theater company based in Garrison, NY, one hour north of Manhattan. HVSF was named among The New York Times™ 50 Essential Summer Festivals in 2016, was Hudson Valley Magazine™s 2016 Editors™ Pick for Best Summer Theater, and was nominated for a Drama League Award for its 2015 production of A MIDSUMMER NIGHT™S DREAM. The Festival has established a reputation for lucid, engaging, and highly inventive productions featuring exceptional industry talent and a backdrop of stunning vistas overlooking the Hudson River at historic Boscobel House and Gardens.”