The Inner City Shakespeare Ensemble (ICSE) brings at-risk students into the world of theatre, using Shakespeare’s ageless language and eloquent dramatic insight into people and events. Founded in 2010, this innovative and unique program has brought together hundreds of diverse students from South Central Los Angeles: one of the nation’s most economically challenged areas.
Barriers of ethnicities are erased as our Ensemble explores the 17th Century world of the Bard, resulting in a life-changing impact that can be measured far beyond the scope of production and theatrical performance.
Under Artistic Director, Dr. Melanie Andrews, with mentors and industry professionals, hundreds of talented young people joyfully discover their special talents and perform with style before audiences reaching more than 5000 people.
In a community blighted by violence, through ICSE, lives are changed, gang ties are cut. More than 85% of the student performers are in college, carrying their accomplishment far beyond the 4th wall of the theatre into a lasting impact for the future.
Programs begin with casting audition dates around LA, reaching out to disadvantaged students from Elementary Schools, High Schools and the youth acting community within the LAUSD school district. Once cast, rehearsals and theatrical education will begin.
- “8 by 10” ~ Eight One Act Plays directed by Ensemble Members
November 14 and 15 at the Los Angeles Shakespeare Center. 7:30 PM. Free!
- “Shakespeare for Kids” ~ The Children’s Shakespeare Festival at Two Elementary Schools
Annalee Public School in Carson and 93rd Street Eementary School in Los Angeles.
- “Taming of the Shrew” in Culver City
Comedia Style / In The Round – for advanced students
Sponsor: Actors Hall of Fame
- “Twelfth Night” at Hollywood High
April 20-25 SCHOOL PRODUCTION
May 2nd.(Sat) GRAND PARK GALA
- Free Performances at 8 City & County Parks
May 9 – 22nd (Venues to be determined)
How You Can Help
This year we are expanding the number of productions which will be enable us to engage even more students from the entire city. We are seeking financial contributions as well as volunteers and mentors for our programs. By supporting ICSE you can sustain this program to change young lives and breathe renewed life into Shakespeare’s legacy.
Make a Contribution
Inner City Shakespeare Ensemble is a non-profit organization 501(c)3 EIN: 46-370307
Inner City Shakespeare Ensemble
Inner City Shakespeare Ensemble was recently featured
on County of Los Angeles Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas’ website:
The ICSE is proud to announce that it has broadened its horizons and cast an incredible ensemble of talented youth from more than a dozen schools within the LAUSD. The program continues its collaboration with industry professionals from around the world, mentoring students with their understanding of Shakespeare as well as the actual performance process. These one-on-one relationships have enhanced academic motivation, personal development and created lifelong, enduring associations.
What Actors are Saying About Shakespeare