Our workshops invite actors to explore an embodied approach of Shakespeare’s words.
We offer workshops for all levels, from professional actors to amateur groups and schools.
"You have but mistook me all this while" Richard II, 3.2.174
Workshop for People of the Global Majority
Will & Co is honoured to host an Embodying Shakespeare workshop for People of the Global Majority
on Zoom, Saturday 12 June, 9.30am-4.30pm (with a lunch break).
The workshop is free, and open to up to 10 participants.
Artistic Director Victoria Gartner will be leading the workshop,
joined by facilitators Honey Gabriel, Kaya Bucholc, Lo Feliciani Ojeda and Shakira Newton.
If you would like to attend, please fill out the form below.
We will confirm your spot by email.
If we do not have enough spots for everyone interested, we will notify you and you will be placed on a priority list for a future date.
We look forward to hearing from you!
Meet your Facilitators
Honey Gabriel, Actor
Honey is a British-Nigerian actor and voiceover artist from South London. She trained at Drama Studio London and is signed to Clarendon Personal Management. Her credits include: The Show Must Go Online, ServiceNow Holiday commercial, BBC One Doctors, Ragged Foils Scratch Podcast and Will & Co.’s Bard in the Yard.
I was a maths geek who had no interest in Shakespeare or his “complex” language. Now I’m a full on Bard lover who relishes any opportunity to play with his words.
Shakira Newton, Actor and Writer
Shakira is an actor and writer who is about to graduate East15 Acting School, originally from Portsmouth, but based in London. Shakira is signed by Victoria Lepper Associates.
Alongside her studies and writing, Shakira runs a podcast in collaboration with the National Youth Theatre called Gettin’ Creative where she chats to folk from the performing arts industry and gets advice for the listeners.
I used to really dislike Shakespeare as I couldn’t understand it and the teachers in my school never bothered to take their time with it. But, since attending drama school, I’ve grown a good understanding of the language and a massive love for Shakespeare’s work.
Kaya Bucholc, Actor
Kaya Bucholc is a Canadian actor, originally from Toronto, now living in London, England. She moved to the UK to do her Master's degree in classical acting at LAMDA, graduating in 2018. She has been performing Shakespeare since she was 14; acting in a youth company in Toronto as well as attending a performing arts high school. She later attended York University in Toronto, completing her BFA in their Acting Conservatory program(2014).
I have always had a massive love for Shakespeare and classical texts from a young age and is very fortunate and grateful that this interest was always encouraged. I am very glad that Shakespeare has been a consistent thread for me throughout my career. I hope to be able to share this love with anyone and everyone who has ever felt distanced from it, as truly, it is universal and for all.
Victoria Gartner, Writer & Director
Victoria Gartner is an award-nominated writer, director and teacher. Over the last ten years, she has written and directed work around Shakespeare’s life and times that has been produced in the UK, Switzerland, Germany and the Netherlands. Victoria is the Artistic Director of Will & Co, which she founded in 2015. She is the writer and director of Bard in the Yard, which is now performed throughout the UK to great public and critical acclaim (The Guardian, The Telegraph, The Independent), with Dame Helen Mirren as a Godmother.
The first time I encountered Shakespeare was by playing Snug the Joiner in a student production of A Midsummer Night's Dream. I didn't understand half of my lines, but I had a great time - and I knew I wanted to learn more! I'm from a working class background and English is my third language, so I've have had to fight for my work to be taken seriously.
Lo Feliciani Ojeda, Actor and Director
Lo Feliciani Ojeda (they/he) is a theatre director and actor from Caracas, Venezuela. They are currently training for their MFA in Theatre Directing from East 15 Acting School. They are also a graduate of UNCSA Drama Class of 2020 in North Carolina in the US. They have previously worked with Lovewell Institute for the Creative Arts and interned Miami New Drama. Favorite credits include: Platform 2 with East 15 Class of 2021 BA Acting, The Odyssey, Speaking of Courage, Dry Land.
As an immigrant theatre kid whose English was a second language, Shakespeare always seemed like an impossibility. But now, with the help of teachers and mentors, and a lot of rhythm, I believe that Shakespeare can not only help actors explore their whole selves physically and emotionally but also go back to its roots of accessible and popular theatre for all.
“Victoria has such a refreshing perspective when it comes to the world of Shakespeare. Her unique insights allow you to put to action the classic techniques Shakespeare uses in his writing whilst still actively encouraging you to move, play, engage with and express speeches in ways you never even imagined. I HIGHLY recommend taking up every chance to work with Victoria. Trust me. You won’t regret it.”
Laura Cooper-Jones, Actor, West Midlands
“I had a lot of fear towards Shakespeare and I used to say to myself that "Shakespeare is too difficult for me." If Victoria hadn't offered her fun, informative and juicy Shakespeare sessions this winter, I probably wouldn't have had enough courage to do a Shakespeare monologue in front of other people. She really pushed me and taught me how fun Shakespeare can really be! Thank you, Victoria."
Riko Nakazono, Actor, Japan-UK
Workshops for Actors
Artistic Director Victoria Gartner has developed an acclaimed physical approach to Shakespeare’s words in other to unlock the actor’s body as well as their brain.
Too often, verse will be dissected so much that the actor will find themselves paralysed by multiple meanings, associations, and metaphors and be at a loss on how to best do what it is they need to do: convey the emotional life of the character and strive to make things happen on stage.
Embodying Shakespeare starts with the body. We will awaken the body of the actor to truth, to strength, to vitality. Our body’s intelligence is primordial when tackling Shakespeare’s works, because his words were chiselled at a time when people had a much closer relationship with their bodies and their senses (count references in Shakespeare to eyes, mouth, tongue, liver, feet – any body part).
We will of course also help the actor reaching a more profound understanding of the text, and a richer texture and soundscape through various exercises and targeted work.
Victoria Gartner has been teaching Shakespeare for many years. She delivers workshops in schools and universities, as well as for professional actors in both French and English. She combines her extensive academic knowledge of Shakespeare with her artistic and directing work, and her method of unlocking Shakespeare’s emotional beats is through embodiment. Her movement work is inspired from working with teachers and mentors Paul Oertel and Kath Burlinson, and her verse work owes to the wisdom of Peter Hall, Peter Brook and Cicely Berry. She is passionate about the rhythm of Shakespeare’s words, and how much their meaning and ring can appeal to our shared humanity. She teaches drama as Shakespeare’s Birthplace Trust, and is a regular director and Shakespeare module leader at East15 Acting School.
To book a workshop, please message Executive Producer Charlie Mackellar.
“Victoria unlocks Shakespeare and turns preconceived notions upside down. She helped me find what Shakespeare's words really are: universal, simple, honest and aching with purpose.”
Emma Nihill, Actor, London
“Victoria breathes life into Shakespeare like no other! Her passion, enthusiasm and love of Shakespeare's work is infectious! She creates a wonderful rehearsal environment in which you feel empowered to play the stakes - thank you so much Victoria!”
Abigail Pidgeon, Actor, Nottingham
Workshops for Schools
Our Workshop will bring all Apprentice Bards to the Yard!
A workshop with the Bard will get your students on their feet: warm-up and pronunciation exercises will be paired with movement and script notes. Each student will come out of this 1-hour session having memorised and performed a line of Shakespeare’s verse. We guarantee that after this, the iambic pentameter will never seem daunting again!
We believe that Shakespeare should be fun. Our Artistic Director Victoria Gartner’s workshop methods have been honed through years of experience teaching Shakespeare workshops in schools and universities, notably at the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust and East15 Acting School in London. We will get your students our of their footnotes and on stage, and will spark their confidence in tackling Shakespeare.
Benefits of our workshops
We will make students experience exactly that Shakespeare’s words were meant to be played, and why that matters.
Each student will learn one verse line by heart.
We believe in the crucial importance of introducing Shakespeare as a fun and accessible topic. All students will feel that Shakespeare was always meant for them.
According to statistics published by CEDAR (Centre for Educational Development, Attainment and Research: Prof. Steve Strand, 2010), students that benefit from a successful Shakespeare workshop also show statistically significant improvement in their general attitude to school. Because if they are shown that they understand Shakespeare, they believe they could understand pretty much anything else!
To book a workshop for your school, please message Education Manager Beatrice Lawrence.
“My students really, really enjoyed the way that the very well thought out workshop allowed them to have a completely new insight into Shakespeare’s universe and plays. We will welcome you again in a heartbeat!”
Jean-Claude, High School Teacher
“The pupils learnt a lot, had fun, and got a lot of free advice into the bargain. Thank you, and thanks to the fun and enthusiastic kids who had the treat of participating and watching."
Dean Allington, Head of Drama
Dean Close School
Book Your Workshop
Just drop a line to firstname.lastname@example.org
to book your workshop!