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Santa Cruz Shakespeare

Organization Mission

Inspired by Shakespeare, we create and strengthen community by bringing audiences and theater artists together to celebrate stories about our collective humanity.

Santa Cruz Shakespeare’s outdoor theatre festival is a treasured 40-year tradition. Summer performances attract local theatre-goers of all generations and offer an experience that explores, questions, and celebrates the political, social, and human condition.

The Big Idea:
Student Transportation Fund

Santa Cruz Shakespeare extends its public summer season into September each year to offer student-only matinees for regional high schools.

Our ultimate goal is to ensure that every single high school student in Santa Cruz County has seen a live, professional production of one of Shakespeare’s plays by the time they graduate.

And regional teachers enjoy bringing their students to Santa Cruz Shakespeare’s matinee week. It gives many of their students their first opportunity to enjoy a quality production of a play in an outdoor theater.

But many schools run up against a frequent problem: the lack of transportation to and from the Grove. Due to lack of funding for bus transportation, and the parents’ lack of vehicles or inability to miss work, transporting students as a group is not an option for many schools.

Donations will go to Santa Cruz County schools in need only and will allow SC Shakespeare to expand its current matinee opportunities to more students.

As an actor of color, I'm blessed to be with such a diverse cast — playing royal blood. It's important, especially for young kids of color, that when they see theater, that they see someone who looks like them playing someone who is a king, who's a princess. They find joy in that!

Essense Stiggers, college acting intern at SC Shakespeare