Performing Shakespeare by Simon Purse

A fun way to perform William Shakespeare works

Upcoming Class Schedule

21 March, 2018 — 25 March, 2018

Programme Details


Wed 21 March 2018 – 7.30pm to 10.30pm
Thu 22 March 2018 – 7.30pm to 10.30pm
Fri 23 March 2018 – 7.30pm to 10.30pm
Sat, 24 March 2018 – 10am to 8pm with one hour break afternoon, evening short break
Sun, 25 March 2018 – 9am to 1pm
Sun, 25 March 2018 – 3pm to 5pm – Showcase with Q&A

Is there a public showcase?
Yes, students will showcase a work-in-progress work on Sunday 25 March 2018, 3pm to 5pm at HCAC.

Who is this workshop for?
Everyone. We welcome both actors and non-actors with an interest in the art of poetry writing/performance.
This workshop is open to anyone from all backgrounds.
Minimum age for admission is 13 and above.



What is this workshop about?

Working with Shakespeare’s text can often feel daunting and confusing.

This one-week intensive workshop (with a short showcase) explores original practice techniques and the work of Patrick Tucker’s Original Shakespeare Company. It will unlock the clues and detail in the text that allow for better understanding and clear performance.

Whether you’re an actor or a teacher this illuminating workshop will leave you more confident with verse speaking, the structure of classical text and the performance of Shakespearean roles.

Actors will be cast in roles to learn over the course of week to perform in the studio at the end of the workshop!

About Simon Purse

Simon was a member of Patrick Tucker’s Original Shakespeare Company for ten years, training actors and taking the company on tour. He delivers workshops all over the world, demonstrating the principles behind the work, exploring the wealth of information contained in First Folio text, and allowing participants to experience Original Practice Cue Script performance.

Workshops consist of a series of games, exercises and practical investigations, and can include work on specific scenes or speeches as well as more general text. Simon can tailor the workshops to the experience of a group, and can accommodate numbers from about 15 upwards. He can also design workshops to focus on particular plays, characters or themes.



“Simon Purse is a wizard! His workshop on acting Shakespeare opened up new vistas for our talented pool of undergraduate actors. He is sensitive, insightful

and witty. I can’t remember a more successful guest teacher at Stanford in many years. I recommend him with great confidence and enthusiasm.” Patricia Ryan, Head of Undergraduate Acting, Stanford University

“… it doesn’t just involve Shakespeare, it applies to how one should go about ALL acting.”
“This weekend has allowed me to explore a completely different way of working a scene.”

“Simon is marvellous. He loves what he does so much, you can’t help but love it back and understand it perfectly.”

Do I get a discount? Please refer to our early bird promotions.

Payment Plans
Payment Plans are available. Email us at


  • The power of words
  • Cue scripts and Original Practice performance
  • First Folio text and how to be a script detective
  • Verse for actors not for literature exam
  • Thrust staging and blocking
  • Games and complicity

About the Instructor

Simon Purse

Simon is an London based actor, director and teacher.

He was a member of the Original Shakespeare Company for ten years (roles include Albany and Mountague) and was an OSC workshop leader and verse nurse, training actors and taking the company on tour to Jordan and managing the Boys’ Company performance.

Since 2001 he has been training actors in OSC cue script techniques around the world, including Stanford University, SRT, Oxford University, Loyola Marymount University, Drama Studio London, LAMDA, NAFA and Berridge Programs.

Areas of Focus

  • Original Practice performance
  • De-mystifying Shakespeare
  • Theatricality on the Elizabethan Stage
  • Listening and concentration in improv
  • Theatre vs TV and Film

Learning Outcomes

  • Identify and make use of the clues for actors in Shakespeare text
  • Recognise the challenges of classical performance and stitch those into contemporary practice
  • Confidence with language and theatricality
  • An understanding of thrust and shared light staging
  • Enjoying and understanding Shakespeare!

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Performing Shakespeare by Simon Purse / A fun way to perform William Shakespeare works

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