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Shakespeare classic comes to life at Meadow Lark Elementary

By Jolee Sallee,


At Meadow Lark Elementary, a Shakespeare classic is coming to life. It’s all thanks to a group of Bozeman-based actors.

“I liked the part where they had the kids come up on stage,” said Kynzi Morgan, a 4 th grader at Meadow Lark.

She is just one of many students who got to experience an interactive play put on by The Montana Shakes, an educational outreach program of Montana Shakespeare in the Parks.

“We’re booking 60 schools across the states of Montana and Wyoming,” said Kevin Asselin, the executive art director for Montana Shakespeare in the Parks. He says they aim to engage under severed rural communities as much as they can.

“The goal of the program is to show a 40-minute adaptation of a Shakespeare play, this year it’s called ‘Hamlet Sandwich’,” said Asselin.

An adaptation of the famous play, Hamlet.

“Sometimes kids can feel alone, and Hamlet explores some of those themes,” said Asselin. "We’re bringing those themes out and illuminating them in a really fun and interactive way. The performance is followed by a lively talk-back with students.”

Asselin says it takes quite a bit of time to prepare for their plays.

“We have to hire the actors and because it’s a new play, every year we have to workshop it,” said Asselin.

But he says it’s all worth it.

“It’s really exciting, the kids are at an age where they can engage with the program freely,” said Asselin. “It’s important to find ways to illuminate these themes and bring them into the classroom in a relevant way,” said Asselin.

“I learned that imagination is very important,” said Morgen.

The Montana Shakes will be performing Hamlet Sandwich until April 14. To see their full schedule online .

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