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James Loehlin, Director 208 West 21st Street, Stop B5000, Austin, TX 78712 • 512-471-4726

Camp Shakespeare 2014

Camp Shakespeare, a component of The University of Texas Shakespeare at Winedale Program, is a two-week residential camp for young people, ages 11-16, held near the small rural town of Round Top, Fayette County, Texas, with daily activity at the University of Texas Winedale Historical Center.

Camp Shakespeare Photos

Camp Shakespeare is dedicated to exploring a Shakespearean play through performance. This is an experience in daily performance, in exploring language and character, in doing, playing at play. It is not an "acting" or "theater" camp. Here, we celebrate the creative process. We do not rehearse "shows."

Camp Shakespeare seeks kids who work well with others, who are inventive, elastic, eager to explore and take risks, and are ready to rumble when they arrive.

The following observations by a former (1980) Shakespeare at Winedale student whose daughter (age 12) attended Camp Shakespeare, and the parent of a recent camper (age 16), say quite a bit about what happens at Camp Shakespeare:

Their accomplishment [at Camp] is the more remarkable when we consider that none of these students are theater or drama students but only kids interested in working together to explore a play through performance, the original purpose of Shakespeare at Winedale. In the process, their play becomes a vehicle for their exploration of language, of social encounter and problem-solving, for developing self-confidence and self-esteem, verbal and written expression, and, through Shakespeare, for gaining insight into the human condition.

Looking in from the outside, it's a pretty risky thing that Camp Shakespeare is doing. I actually think that's why it works. You take a bunch of kids who don't know each other, have wildly different personalities, don't know if they have chemistry together, and ask them to produce a world class production. In two weeks! A lot of organizations would never attempt that and most could never pull it off. But I think Camp Shakespeare does because it creates the right community for those kids ' it's not about me, it's about us; it's about the play. The kids realize what amazing stuff they can accomplish in just two weeks' time by letting go. The camp empowers kids to be themselves and use what they've got, and puts faith in them that they can do it. Believing they can do it, they do!

Camp Shakespeare accepts applications from candidates anywhere, in public, private, or home schools. Experience with theater or with Shakespeare is not necessary. Commitment to working long hours daily at play with others is.

Camp Dates

Camp Shakespeare will offer two sessions for Summer 2014:   

Session #1:  Sunday, June 8 - Saturday, June 21

Session #2:  Sunday, June 29 – Saturday, July 12

Performance Schedule

The Comedy of Errors Performances

- June 19th at 3:30pm at the Crystal Theatre in Gonzales

- June 20th at 7pm at Henkel Hall in Round Top

- June 21st at 1pm in the Theatre Barn at Winedale

Twelfth Night Performances

- July 10th at 3:30pm at the Crystal Theatre in Gonzales

- July 11th at 7pm at Henkel Hall in Round Top

- July 12th at 1pm in the Theatre Barn at Winedale

For ticket reservations, please email Doc Ayres at

Camp Fee

The cost of Camp Shakespeare ’14 is $1,000.00. Some scholarships are available.

Questions of any kind should be directed to Doc Ayres at Students wishing to learn more about the process of Camp Shakespeare may wish to participate in the Spring activities of the Outreach to Schools Programs or "Saturday Shakespeare" workshops at The University of Texas directed by Clayton Stromberger,

For a full description of Camp Shakespeare's staff, daily schedule, application process, and more, please download the full information guide (pdf). 

Camp Site

The site of Camp Shakespeare ’14 is the Briarfield B & B Retreat & Conference Center, near Round Top, Texas.  The Inn provides a comfortable country and historical setting for the experience: students enjoy the privilege of using and the responsibility of caring for these beautifully-restored 19th century Texas buildings which serve as dormitories, dining, and gathering spaces.

Camp Applications

Each session will be composed of 12 students. The application process requires prospective campers to send (1) the completed Application Form; (2) an essay by the applicant (a) introducing herself/himself and (b) explaining why he or she wishes to participate in Camp Shakespeare '14, exploring expectations/hopes/goals; and (3) two letters of recommendation from teachers. Applications from former campers do not require teachers' letters.

Please note: applications are due April 15th

Two application forms are available on this website, one for prospective campers, one for former campers.

The completed file should be sent to Professor Jim Ayres, P.O. Box 202, Round Top, Tx, 78954, before April 15.

Application for former camp students (pdf).

Application for new students (pdf).
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