Optimist Theatre's premiere award-winning program...
"To Be! Shakespeare Here and Now!
We were thrilled. Ron was phenomenal. My kids think Shakespeare is cool. They want to read him and act in his plays."
- Anne White, Rippon Middle School, Woodbridge, VA
The most famous playwright in the English language was also an actor, a student, and a very human Man of His Age. Portrayed by actor Ron Scot Fry, Shakespeare comes to life for your school, library, or organization in his one-human event … To Be! Shakespeare Here and Now
What is "To Be! Shakespeare Here and Now"?
"To Be!" is Yours - It is customized for each audience. The presentation can emphasize the plays, themes, and historical elements you want most.
"To Be!" is Fun - Shakespeare used comedy to entertain his audiences, and "To Be!" follows suit with hilarious scenes, ridiculous characters, and outrageous history.
"To Be!" is Interactive - Audience members take the stage, casting insults, learning manners, and playing roles including Crab the Dog.
"To Be!" is Dynamic - Ron is an actor and a teacher, but he's also a clown and a stuntman. Every show includes a swordfight, and if "To Be!" is a one-man show, then who ...?
"Ron is one of those rare people who can actually bring a distant time to life for his students."
"To Be! Shakespeare Here and Now" is a one-man, first-person interactive experience with William Shakespeare. Portrayed by Ron Scot Fry, founding Artistic Director of Milwaukee's Shakespeare in the Park, "To Be!" has been playing since 1999 and been enjoyed by over 70,000 people (and growing) in schools, libraries, community centers, senior centers, private homes and a European castle. It's played from coast to coast to Florence, Italy. Home based in Milwaukee, WI, "To Be!" currently tours most often in Wisconsin and throughout the Midwest.
Booking for 2023
"To Be! Shakespeare Here and Now!" is booking performances and workshops for 2023.
Performance spaces options are SO FLEXIBLE .
They (the students) thought he was “Cool!” I thought he was a Great Teacher. We are very glad Ron came our way.
Thank you again for a fabulous afternoon! I forgot about the virus for a while, what a gift! It almost brought tears to my eyes being able to do this.
I was extremely impressed with “To Be. . .” Some of the students commented that they wished it had gone longer—the time seemed to go by very quickly. Extremely effective; very believable. The fact that Ron catered the program specifically to our requests was so helpful and appreciated.
"Thank you and all those who helped make the online Shakespeare program possible! It was wonderful. Erik enjoyed it very much."