Highlights of TSC's 2013-14 Season

Annual Report | July 2014

You helped make our Sixth Season one of our most successful and far-reaching years yet.

The season began in 2013 with our municipal government eliminating all of TSC's education funding for our community and then letting us know our office lease would not be renewed.

But take a look at what you helped us accomplish after that through June 2014...

  • The National Endowment for the Arts/Arts Midwest awarded TSC a $25,000 matching grant for our innovative Romeo and Juliet Project. TSC was one of only 40 theatres in the United States to be recognized, and the youngest, with this prestigious Shakespeare in American Communities award. You quickly matched the grant, thus nearly replacing all the education funds that were eliminated last summer.
  • TSC programmed nearly 13,000 student interactions in the Memphis area, across Tennessee, and in five other southern states with its education outreach and professional productions. Programming included a TSC-created touring show titled Shake(s), Rattle, & Roll, matinees and post-show community discussions of teen violence around Romeo and Juliet, The Taming of the Shrew, The Romeo and Juliet Project in primarily Title One schools, 53 in-school playshops, 82 days of in-school residencies, and a TSC-created interactive Study Guide for The Taming of the Shrew.
  • We produced five productions for over 6,000 audience members, 34% of whom were Memphis area students under 18 years of age.
  • We launched the Tuesday Literary Salon as part of our Southern Exposure Series, as well as the professional career of local artist-manager Cara McHugh (TSC 2014 Journeyman).
  • We welcomed new collaborators, partners, and generous sponsors in Boyle Investment Company, Independent Bank, International Paper, Shelby County Schools, and Target Stores.
  • You broke all education program fundraising records with our Fifth Annual Gala in February, which featured one of the great gentlemen and talents of Broadway, Howard McGillin (Phantom of the Opera, The Mystery of Edwin Drood).
  • You put TSC in a financial position to expand our upcoming seventh season, in which we will project 22% growth, project 48% of income coming from earned sources (instead of contributed sources), and ensure that 60% of our expenses will be targeted for our programming (instead of toward overhead or fixed expenses).
  • We kept our ticket prices unchanged for the third year in a row.
  • We transitioned to a new, modern, larger administrative office within the Shops at Forest Hill village.

Your investment in us goes into people. Not materials.

When you invested in TSC, you invested in our small staff, in our community's children and teachers, and in Shelby County's patrons who, like us and like our namesake, bring a curiosity of life's deeper questions to the stage.

Your investment in TSC does not go to a building or paying down debt or excessive overhead. TSC has none of these. What we do have are the plays of Shakespeare, great artists and teachers to explore them, a commitment to professionalism and inquiry, and you.

Thank you for going "Unto the Breach" this past year with us!

News

  • Waiting for Godot
  • New Permanent Year-Round Home for TSC
  • Shakespeare Shout-Out Series
  • New Germantown Municipal School District Partnership
  • New Company d and Memphis VA Partnerships

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PURCHASE TICKETS

The masterwork of the 20th Century may also be Beckett’s absurdly comedic response to William Shakespeare’s masterwork of the 17th Century (King Lear).  But they’re both about eternity…or forever…whichever comes through the door first. 

Beckett’s inquisitive tramps prompt us all to ask ourselves, who or what are we waiting on this holiday season?  Celebrate the Now! 

Performances are December 7, 8, 9, 14, 15, 16 at 7pm; and December 10 and 17 at 3pm in the Winegardner Auditorium at Dixon Gallery & Gardens.

Tickets are $34.  December 7 Preview is $16.  December 7 and 14 are Free Will Kids’ Nights: children 17 years and younger are admitted free when accompanied by a paying/attending guardian.  Seniors (62+): $29.  Students (18+): $16.  Dixon members receive 20% off tickets (no other discounts may apply).  December 8 is Opening Night, which welcomes patrons to a post-show reception with the actors. 

General Admission/Free Parking.  Presented by special arrangement with Samuel French, Inc.

Parental Note:  There are a few instances of mature language in the production.  Please call TSC's Box Office to learn more, or you can you review the entire script on-line from several sources.

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We have Purchased the Former Ballet Memphis Property to Create the State’s First Permanent, Year-Round Home for Professional Shakespeare Performance, Education, and Training in Memphis

pic newhome tsc2017(August 31) -- Tennessee Shakespeare Company today announced it has purchased the former facility and property of Ballet Memphis located at 7950 Trinity Road in Memphis as its first, permanent home. 

The announcement was made by Dan McCleary, the company’s founder and Producing Artistic Director; Owen B. Tabor, the company’s Board President for the past six years; and E. Frank Bluestein, the company’s founding Executive Director.

With this acquisition, Tennessee Shakespeare Company is preparing to create the first and only permanent, year-round home for professional Shakespeare performance, education, and training in the state of Tennessee.

TSC purchased the 18,484 square foot facility outright from Ballet Memphis for $1,900,000.  There is no mortgage. 

TSC, now beginning its tenth anniversary season, expects to begin interior renovation this year and be completed in Spring 2018.

The renovation will focus on modifying existing dance studios into a state-of-the-art, professional, flexible theatre for seating up to 200 patrons, as well as a spacious Education Wing.  The public lobby, restrooms, and support areas for the theatre also will be modified.

Centrally located to all of Shelby County just north of Walnut Grove Road, between Germantown Road and the northeast corner of Shelby Farms Park, the unique glass-and-steel facility will house all of TSC’s operations under one roof:  performances, training, education, administrative offices, storage, costume shop, scene shop, and commercial kitchen.  The facility was constructed in 1998, and an addition was built in 2012.  It affords parking for nearly 70 cars.

TSC and Ballet Memphis, longtime arts colleagues whose artistic staffs have collaborated over the years, entered into a Purchase & Sale Agreement in late June.  The sale represents one Memphis not-for-profit arts organization selling to another for re-use of a special purpose building.  TSC’s agent was W. Cary Whitehead III of Boyle Investment Company.

For the last nine years, TSC has created site-specific/environmental Shakespeare and classical productions, both indoors and outside, throughout Shelby County, partnering with long-time friends Dixon Gallery & Gardens, the University of Memphis, St. George’s Church, Shelby Farms Park, Germantown City Hall, Poplar Pike Playhouse, Hutchison School, and Germantown Performing Arts Center.

“This is an important moment in Memphis performing arts,” said Dr. Tabor.  “We have researched more than 50 sites in the last few years, and the former Ballet property is perfect for our needs and for what our audiences say they would like.  The Ballet’s new home in Overton Square is so impressive, and they have been wonderful to work with during this transaction.  We wish them tremendous success.  We appreciate that this special building is the launch pad for exciting futures for two important arts groups in Memphis.

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The First Free Shakespeare Shout-Out Series Launches Our 10th Season throughout Shelby County

pic shakespeare shout out 10 1 17Mario Hoyle (Romeo) and Kiana Holley (Juliet).

We officially launch our tenth anniversary season this week when we bring Romeo and Juliet to the historic outdoor train depot and platform in Collierville Town Square on Saturday, October 7 at 4:00 pm.

Our first Free Shakespeare Shout-Out Series, sponsored by Evans/Petree, P.C., features 11 performances of three touring productions to ten outdoor/indoor locations throughout Shelby County playing through November 10.

No tickets are required.  First come/first seated.

Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar, directed by Stephanie Shine, questions the future of the Roman Republic, the love that sustains it, and the leadership that breaches it.  Romeo and Juliet, directed by Carmen-maria Mandley, is fast, physical, and daring in its descent from comedy to mortal, young tragedy.  And TSC’s Shake(s), Rattle, & Roll, directed by Shine, pairs the legacy music of Memphis with the famous Shakespeare scenes TSC imagines inspired them.

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Announcing a New, Multi-Year Partnership with the Germantown Municipal School District for Cutting-Edge Classical Curriculum for Elementary, Middle, and High School Students

pic germantown partnership1Tennessee Shakespeare Company and the Germantown Municipal School District today announced a unique, multi-year education partnership that will bring immersive, cutting-edge Shakespeare curriculum to life for every student in grades five, seven, and nine.

Starting with this school year, all GMSD fifth and seventh grade students will participate in an introductory, immersive playshop to prepare and excite them for experiencing a full, live performance of TSC’s self-created production of Shakes, Rattle, and Roll.  The show pays tribute to our hometown heritage, creatively linking the signature music of Memphis to the works of Shakespeare that could have inspired them.

All ninth grade students will be treated to TSC’s nationally-acclaimed Romeo and Juliet Project, a four-part interactive residency that concludes with an intimate and riveting live performance of Romeo and Juliet.

The Project, originally launched at Germantown High School seven years ago and now operating in many Shelby County Schools, transforms classrooms into playing spaces to change students' expectations and reception of the material. The residency begins with three sessions that engage the students in playing three different parts of the play.  The positive impact on the students’ grades, compassion level, engagement in continued exploration of classical texts, and their rehearsed ability to walk away from potentially life-threatening situations in their own lives has proven quantifiable and remarkable in the scores of schools in which TSC has taught over the past eight years. 

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New, Exciting TSC Partnerships with Company d and the Memphis VA, and Expanding Programs with Jail East and Hope Academy

“TSC gives them models to express their feelings, which they probably have never done.  For maybe the first time in their lives, they think about the world around them and their role in the community.”

- Joyce Anderson, Juvenile Manager, Shelby County Sheriff's Office

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Hope Academy residency participants

We are thrilled to announce new partnerships between TSC and Company d and the Memphis Veterans Administration Medical Association.  Also this month (August), we are happily expanding our Shakespeare programs for adjudicated youth at both Jail East and Hope Academy.

TSC is spending August in residence with Company d.  Nationally recognized, Company d is a dance company of young adults with Down syndrome under the artistic direction of choreographer Darlene Winters.  Founded in 2001, Company d is committed to inspire, empower, and teach individuals with Down syndrome who have an inherent aptitude for the performing arts.

TSC Education Manager Carmen-maria Mandley and TSC Education artists guide participants through the tumultuous world of Romeo and Juliet.  Using movement and text, the dancers are immersed in Shakespeare's images and encouraged to discover their personal connection with the characters of the play.

"Company d dancers are having a dynamic experience with TSC this week,” says Winters, Company d founder and Artistic Director.  “The play and its language are being brought to life with interactive methods.  The partnership with Tennessee Shakespeare Company is the first partnership with a theatre company in this region.  I am so excited about this new and unique experience for individuals with Down syndrome, which will enrich artistic growth and expand cultural literacy skills."

Also in August, TSC begins working with veterans at the Memphis VA Medical Association. This program brings together service veterans with theatre practitioners to use the plays of Shakespeare in addressing combat-related traumatic and re-integration issues. The model, created by the Feast of Crispian Project in Milwaukee, WI, was created to strengthen the personal psychological resources available to service veterans - especially those with post-deployment health issues - through the practice and skills of theatre combined with the timeless themes and imagistic language of Shakespeare.

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Tennessee Shakespeare Company is generously supported by:

International Paper    FedEx         Tennessee Arts Commission

logo-ibank             University of Memphis  artsmemphis std color logo2500



     First Tenneessee Foundation    

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Evans Petree


Individual Season Sponsors:

Barbara B. Apperson Angel Fund; Nancy Copp; Ernest, Pat, Martha, and Marian Kelly; Milton T. Schaeffer; The Family of Owen and Margaret Tabor;
Ann and Wellford Tabor.

Season Partners:

Collierville Municipal School District; Dixon Gallery & Gardens; Germantown Municipal School District; Memphis Hunt & Polo Club; Palladio;
Shelby County Schools; The University of Memphis’ Department of Theatre & Dance.

Tennessee Shakespeare Company is a proud member of:
Alliance for Nonprofit Excellence       artsmemphis std color logo2500    logo-gacc          Tennesseans for the Arts     Tennessee Theatre Association     Where We Live