CSF in the Schools

  • Post-show workshops

    Students participate in a hands-on theatre workshop following the performance.
  • "Master constable, you go not the way to examine."

    Dogberry (Crystal Eisele), Don John (Joan Dieter), Verges (Tessa Nelson) and the friar (Sean Scrutchins) in the school tour of Much Ado About Nothing.
  • "Pray thee, fellow, peace."

    Dogberry (Crystal Eisele) silences Don John (Joan Dieter) in Much Ado About Nothing.
  • "He was wont to speak plain and to the purpose."

    Benedick (Sean Scrutchins) shares his thoughts with the audience in Much Ado About Nothing.

Shakespeare & Violence Prevention

The Colorado Shakespeare Festival is proud to collaborate with the Center for the Study and Prevention of Violence and the Department of Theatre & Dance at CU-Boulder to present a Shakespeare and Violence Prevention program, with thanks to generous funding from CU Outreach, White Wave Foods, Haynes and Boone LLC, Liner Law, the Boulder Arts Commission, an agency of the Boulder City Council, and the CU College of Arts and Sciences. Since 2011, the program has visited more than 72,000 Colorado schoolchildren. Professional actors perform an abridged Shakespeare play at your school, followed by classroom workshops about violence prevention. Students in post-show workshops roleplay alternatives to violence and learn about Safe2Tell, an anonymous tipline. 

Check out this recent article in the Daily Camera!

The Taming of the Shrew

September 27-November 4 
Appropriate for grades 3-12 
50 minutes 

Petruchio arrives in Padua anxious to increase his fortune through an advantageous marriage. What he finds is Katherina, reputed to be so cantankerous that no one will have her. Determined to marry her anyway, Petruchio sets out to “tame” her. Does this “taming” only go one way? Where’s the line between playful banter and controlling behavior? The play raises necessary questions about power, gender relationships, family dynamics, and personal responsibility. In this all-female production, students are invited to consider the relationship between gender and mistreatment in one of Shakespeare's most beloved comedies. 

Spring 2017: The Comedy of Errors and Julius Caesar

The Comedy of Errors: grades 3-5
January 31-March 10, 2017
30 minutes
In a mixed up world, two sets of identical twins are caught up in a boatload of mayhem as they try to get through one crazy day. This performance invites elementary audiences to discover the joy of Shakespeare's comedy, while considering the physical mistreatment and bullying in many of the play's relationships. 

Julius Caesar: grades 6-8
January 31-March 10, 2017
50 minutes
Caesar's power is growing, and it's making his peers nervous. A group of conspirators begin to plot his demise, and his friend Brutus is placed at a crucial crossroads. What happens when your friends are up to no good? How do you develop the courage to speak up when something isn't right? This classic play speaks volumes about how to intervene in a planned violent attack. 

PBS NewsHour segment on CSF's Shakespeare & Violence Prevention tour:

Cost: $600 (half day) or $1200 (full day)

Subsidies available for qualified schools
A half day program ($600) lasts approximately two hours and includes: 

  • Comprehensive study guide 
  • Abridged performance (250 students max)
  • Brief post-show talk-back with actors
  • Three 50-minute classroom workshops about violence prevention (30 students max per workshop)

A full day program ($1200) includes:

  • Comprehensive study guide 
  • Abridged performance (250 students max--a 2nd performance can be arranged in lieu of 3 workshops)
  • Brief post-show talk-back with actors
  • Up to nine (9) 50-minute classroom workshops about violence prevention (30 students max per workshop, held in three rounds)


  • A full day program begins with a 9 a.m. performance, followed by three rounds of workshops (from 10:30-11:20, from 12:30-1:20, and from 2-2:50) and culminating with a counselor check-out from 2:50-3 p.m.
  • A full day program can include a second performance in lieu of one round of 3 workshops
  • A half day program begins with a 9 a.m. performance, followed by three workshops from 10:10-11 a.m. and culminating with a counselor check-out from 11-11:10. (Afternoon programs begin at 1 p.m., with workshops from 2:10-3:00 p.m. and a counselor check-out from 3:00-3:10.)
  • Schedules can be adjusted to suit your school. Please contact us and we'll create a schedule that works for your school. 

How do I book the tour?

Email csfedout@colorado.edu or call (303) 735-1181 with the following information:

  • Requested tour date (no Mondays)
  • Age/grade of students 
  • Specify whether you prefer a full or half day (and morning or afternoon preference)
  • School name and location

In the News

Daily Camera 2016: "Boulder Elementary Students Learning Anti-Bullying Strategies through Shakespeare"

KVNF Radio story on our 2015 visit to Paonia schools: Using Shakespeare to Combat Bullying in Colorado Schools

Channel 8 Boulder's Inside Boulder News: Anti-Violence School Play

KGNU Interview: Morning Magazine, March 7, 2014

PBS NewsHour 2013 video: "To Bully or Not to Bully: Using Shakespeare in Schools to Address Violence" and  "Anti-Bullying Lessons with the Bard"

Daily Camera 2013: "Elementary students learn to employ anti-violence strategies through Shakespeare"

Westword: "The battle against bullying begins with the Bard"

9News video: Colorado & Company Interview

Denver Post 2011: "Shakespeare gives the latest strategy in anti-bullying in schools"

Daily Camera 2011: "Colorado Shakespeare Festival uses 'Twelfth Night' to talk about bullying"

Want to help?

You can make a donation directly to CSF Education! Gifts to Education provide tuition scholarships for camps and theatre classes, and subsidies for schools performances and workshops. 

Make a gift to CSF Education!

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