By Dr. Marciene Mattleman

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – As a high school student, Alexandra Greco discovered The Philadelphia Shakespeare Theatre while waiting at a SEPTA stop. The poster of William Shakespeare ripping off Elizabethan finery revealing a Superman-style S emblazoned across his chest intrigued her.

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During the last school year, 706 students in 11 schools also were intrigued by the 5 day Artist-in-Residency program, with hands-on activities addressing the literary and performance aspects of Shakespeare’s plays.

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The theatre also brings a 75 minute version of Hamlet to school auditoriums, cafeterias and gyms where professional actors perform the tragedy. Seventy-three percent of the students reported never before seeing a professional production. An Archbishop Ryan student said,” Seeing the play made the story come to life.”

Teachers attend workshops participating as students, learning how to teach Shakespeare’s plays in an interactive way and there is a teen summer camp.

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Alexandra is now a teacher and brings her students to the same theater that turned her on to
Shakespeare. Learn more at phillyshakespeare.org.