New YPS production of Taming of the Shrew

1 August 2011

RSC premieres new production of Young People's Shakespeare The Taming of the Shrew in West Midlands' schools and in the Swan Theatre

Young People's Shakespeare
The Taming of the Shrew
By William Shakespeare
Edited by Tim Crouch

In schools from 19 September

Press Performance in a school: 29 September, 1pm, at Oval Primary School, Birmingham

In the Swan from 24 September – 15 October 2011

Following its highly successful Young People's Shakespeare productions of The Comedy of Errors, and Hamlet* the RSC continues its work with and for young people with a new production of The Taming of the Shrew edited and directed by Tim Crouch.

RSC Artistic Director Michael Boyd said: 'The RSC is serious about creating high quality performances of Shakespeare's work for young audiences. Having two Young People's Shakespeare productions in our current repertoire speaks volumes about that. Alongside a six week Hamlet tour going out to schools and venues across the country. Tim Crouch becomes the latest leading theatre artist to put bold and exciting work into schools and onto RSC stages for audiences aged 8 years old and upwards. I hope that Tim's production of The Taming of the Shrew will vividly demonstrate that Shakespeare can be the most exciting introduction a child can have to theatre going and theatre making.'
The RSC is serious about creating high quality performances of Shakespeare's work for young audiences. Having two Young People's Shakespeare productions in our current repertoire speaks volumes about that. Alongside a six week Hamlet tour going out to schools and venues across the country, we welcome Tim Crouch to our stable of directors, putting bold and exciting work into schools and onto our stages for audiences aged 8 years old and upwards. I hope that Tim's production of The Taming of the Shrew will vividly demonstrate that Shakespeare can be the most exciting introduction a child can have to theatre going and theatre making.'

The production, cast with members of the current RSC ensemble of actors, will perform in schools in the West Midlands region and will also join the Swan repertoire for eleven performances during September and October.

Tim Crouch, director, writer and performer said: 'The Taming of the Shrew always felt like a natural choice for the RSC's Young People's Shakespeare. Its themes of sibling rivalry, bullying, love, identity and education make it a perfect play for a young, enquiring audience. Shakespeare tells a compelling story but it is not sugar-coated'. He continued: 'The cast for The Taming of the Shrew is led by two outstanding young actors, Nikesh Patel and Madeline Appiah, as Petruchio and Katherina. I am excited to be putting Christopher Sly (played by Jamie Beamish) back where he belongs - deep into the heart of the audience with some opinions of his own.'

The cast also includes: Caroline Martin (Baptista), Jason Morell (Grumio/Gremio), David McGranaghan (Lucentio), Daniel Percival (Tranio), Emily Plumtree (Bianca) and Daniel Rose (Hortensio).

The production is an introduction to Shakespeare for children aged eight upwards, and their families. It is inspired by Stand Up For Shakespeare, the RSC's manifesto for Shakespeare in schools which calls for children and young people to See Shakespeare Live, Start Shakespeare Earlier and Do Shakespeare on their Feet.

Five members of the company and the assistant director are all taking a specially created Post Graduate Award in the Teaching Shakespeare created by the RSC and the University of Warwick. The actors will be involved in the development and leading of the education programme accompanying the production. In order to gain the PGA qualification, actors take part in training days and tutorials, lead a workshop that is assessed by Warwick academics and write a 2,500 word essay reflecting on their experience.

For further information, please contact nada.zakula@rsc.org.uk or 01789 412622 or for press tickets, dean.asker@rsc.org.uk or 01789 412660
Booking (for performances in the Swan): 0844 800 1110 or www.rsc.org.uk

Notes to editors
*The RSC YPS production of Hamlet reprises its performances with the original cast, and embarks on a six week tour of schools and local theatre venues during September and October, in the West Midlands, Cornwall, Plymouth, North East England, Rotherham and Merseyside areas.

YPS Taming of the Shrew Schools tour information:

  • Monday 19th September - Hallmoor school
  • Tuesday 20th October - Whitehall Junior Community School
  • Wednesday 21st September - Hillstone Primary School
  • Wednesday 28th September - Heath Park Business and Enterprise College
  • Thursday 29th September (PRESS) - The Oval Primary School
  • Friday 30th September - Holly Hall Maths and Computing College
  • Monday 3rd October - Rounds Green Primary School
  • Tuesday 4th October - The Dassett CofE Primary School
  • Wednesday 5th October - Ridpool Primary and Nursery School

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