Grassroots Shakespeare London was founded in the summer of 2011. They have performed in Hyde Park, the New Red Lion Theatre and Victoria Embankment Gardens. In 2012, they launched the More London Free Festival at The Scoop, performed at the Royal Shakespeare Company as part of the World Shakespeare Festival and their production of Much Ado About Nothing at Victoria Embankment Gardens was nominated for two Off West End Awards for Best Production and Best Ensemble. From December 2012 to January 2013, they performed a Five Star, sell-out repertory season of A Midsummer Night's Dream and The Tempest and in June - July 2013, they performed their Five Star Summer of Love season of Romeo and Juliet alongside Love Labour's Lost at the famous Old Red Lion Theatre in Islington.
The company celebrated Shakespeare's 450th birthday in the West End with their sold-out production of 'Othello', starring James Alexandrou and Nari Blair-Mangat, at Leicester Square Theatre.
James Alexandrou as Iago in Othello, April 2016
It is estimated that today there are 27 million people in slavery worldwide. Here at Grassroots Shakespeare London, we think that this is 27 million people too many.
The A21 Campaign is a non-profit, non-governmental organisation (NGO) comprised of companies, government officials, and ordinary people like us who are committed to abolishing human trafficking and sexual exploitation in the 21st century. The main focus of their work is currently in Europe. They rescue people who have been sold into slavery, have safe shelters and help people rebuild their lives through medical and psychological treatment, as well as legal and vocational assistance. If you would like to read more about the great work that they do, please check out their website - www.thea21campaign.org
Together we can make a difference.
Shakespeare Live. Shakespeare Lives.
Grassroots Shakespeare is a 5-star Original Practices ensemble.
At Grassroots were passionate about communicating Shakespeare and our band of merry actors set about getting back to the basics. Shakespeare's actors worked without a director and this inspired our team. The actors had short rehearsal periods (a few hours in the pub our scholarly friends tell us), brought their own props, ideas and collaborated together.
We realised that not only does this create a fantastic team but it re-vitalises, re-imagines and re-examines the text for the actors, who can then communicate that to you!
We are passionate about breaking down barriers, real or perceived, to Shakespeare and his plays. His plays are crammed full of excitement, energy and experience. All human life is here – the characters and the worlds they inhabit are just as relevant today as they’ve always been.
Ellie Nunn as Viola in Twelfth Night, April - May 2016
"Once again Grassroots Shakespeare have demonstrated their ability to produce intelligent, unadorned and accessible Shakespeare."
Nari Blair-Mangat as Othello and Annabel Bates as Desdemona in Othello, April 2014
For Shakespeare 400, Grassroots performed a 6 week run of Twelfth Night starring Ellie Nunn as Viola, Tamaryn Payne as Olivia and John Pickard as Sir Toby Belch. They performed Up at the O2, produced a 14 live broadcast with Twitter, Periscope and GoPro on 23rd April that gained over 260,000 engagements on Twitter in one day, and performed with Simon Russell Beale at London's Guildhall, before receiving a private view of one of the world's top 5 First Folios.
In January 2016, Grassroots was announced as the resident company at Leicester Square Theatre, making them the only permanent resident company in the West End and the first resident Shakespeare company in the West End since the Royal Shakespeare Company.
The company specialises in identifying and working with top emerging actors to create fun and exciting productions of classic works that audiences enjoy, while also working with top production talent. Our team is led by Siobhán Daly and our core ensemble.
The best is yet to come.
"Grassroots Shakespeare Company, in my opinion, have proven themselves worthy of our trust..."