Shakespeare in the Grove

Shakespeare in the Grove has been produced by ARTFARM every summer since 2006.  ARTFARM's professional Shakespeare Ensemble brings its signature physical style to a beautiful cedar grove overlooking the Connecticut River Valley on the campus of Middlesex Community College. 

                                                Shakespeare in the Grove 2017 presents

July 12 - 16 & 19 - 23 at 8 pm

For Hamlet AUDITION information, go HERE.
  For INTERNSHIP information, go HERE.

Photo by Bill DeKine, featuring John Basinger as King Lear, 2014

Shakespeare Slam 2017: Speak Truth To Power
Saturday, May 6 at 7 pm
at the Community Health Center, 675 Main St., Middletown
$25 Tickets include food, wine, beer, music, zany Elizabethan antics and the seventh Shakespeare Slam -- Speak Truth to Power!
Free admission for performers -- guidelines below:

Dear Potential Shakespeare Slam Performers:
This year will be a little different. 
The theme is “Speak Truth to Power” and we are accepting any performance piece up to 2 minutes long which addresses this topic. Shakespeare, Sophocles, Mandela, Angelou, Ginsberg, Shakur, YOU – original and inventive work is appreciated.

What is it?
The Shakespeare Slam is a nearly annual fundraising event for ARTFARM’s Shakespeare in the Grove. This year’s production is Hamlet, which will run July 12 – 23.
Slam performers must prepare and perform selections from Shakespeare or other authors under 2 minutes in length which address the topic “speak truth to power” AND solicit SPONSORS to donate to ARTFARM on their behalf.
The Shakespeare Slam is a good-natured showcase, not a Slam in the competitive sense. The intention is to encourage people to perform in a fun, artistic and playful way, emphasizing the creativity over the competition. Prizes will be awarded to the slammers who raise the most money -- that’s where the real competition is.

Who can participate?
Anyone is welcome to participate. Performers may be Youth, College age, Adult Amateur or Adult Professional.

How do I enter?
Anyone wishing to participate in the Shakespeare Slam must have a “Slam Sponsor Form” (available from ARTFARM or downloadable at You should enlist as many patrons as possible to sponsor your performance.
Individual Sponsorships must be in multiples of 10: $10, $20, $50, $130, $1,000. Minimum patron level is $10.
All performers must have a minimum of $50 in donations in order to perform at the Slam.
Performers must have properly filled out Sponsor Forms and all sponsorships must be paid in full to perform. Sponsors may pay with a check made out to “ARTFARM”, or with cash (receipts available), or by credit card at (remind patrons to designate that it is in support of you!)
All performers must register with ARTFARM by WEDNESDAY, MAY 3 to perform at the Slam. You can bring your completed Sponsor Form and all payments to the Slam on May 6.

Do I have to memorize my text?
Performers are strongly recommended to have their text memorized. And, since this is a “slam” and not a “poetry reading”, you are encouraged to be creative, theatrical and to take liberties in your approach to the performance. Your performance is limited to two minutes.

What will the event be like?
The Shakespeare Slam is a big party designed to let a bunch of people have a load of fun together while raising money for this summer’s production of Hamlet. There will be food, beer and wine, music, dressing up, and fun. Slammers will perform their Shakespeare selections on a small stage on the first floor. The performances will begin at 7:15 pm, integrating Youth, College, Adult Amateur and Adult Professional categories, ending around 9 pm. Performers must arrive by 6:45 at the latest to check in!
The event will be held at the Community Health Center, 675 Main Street, Middletown.

Will there be prizes?
Yes. There will be wonderful prizes for the performers with the largest total dollar amount of Sponsorships. The performer who raises the most money (minimum $500) will win a week in a beachside cottage in Leete's Island, Guilford. 
And other fun prizes given out as well to recognize creativity and inspiration…

Is there a charge to get in?
There will be a $25 ticket price to attend the Shakespeare Slam. Performers do not have to pay. Ticket price includes an endless light buffet and two drink tickets.

Do these need to be solo performances?
No. You can present as a team, a family, a dynamic duo, be theatrical, use multiple voices, use music, puppets, you name it. Keep in mind, though, that the performance area is not large and the limit is 2 minutes. 
For group performances, each performer is required to raise a minimum of $50 in sponsorships in order to perform.
For more info please contact ARTFARM: (860) 346-4390 or Thanks!