The North Carolina Shakespeare Festival is one of the leading purveyors of classical theatre on the southeast coast, with a decades-long reputation for outstanding productions and wide reaching educational programming. Begun as a small professional theatre in 1977, NCSF has launched over 160 productions, with fare ranging from the timeless favorites of Elizabethan England to twentieth century stalwarts by Arthur Miller and George Bernard Shaw (with a beloved annual staging of Dickens’ A Christmas Carol thrown in for good measure).
The company’s outreach program boasts one of the most extensive of any festival in the region, with student matinees, traveling and residency programs that reach over 12,000 young people each year. In 2010, in anticipation of the completion of its new Downtown Center for the Arts, an affiliate theatre company, the Festival Stage of Winston-Salem launched its debut season with an offering of intimate classics by Tennessee Williams (The Glass Menagerie) and Larry Shue (The Foreigner), pledging to continue the first class quality audiences have come to expect on NCSF stages.
North Carolina Shakespeare Festival Information
- Venues: The High Point Theatre (220 East Commerce Avenue, High Point); Hanesbrands Theatre (201 North Spruce Street, Winston-Salem)
- Public Transportation: Very Good for both. The High Point Theatre (a short walk from Hi Tran bus 16 at East Commerce Avenue/South Hamilton Street; a 5-minute walk from the High Point Amtrak Station; and a 6-minute walk from all Hi Tran bus routes and the PART High Point Express bus at the Broad Avenue Terminal). Hanesbrands Theatre (a 7-minute walk from all WSTA and PART bus routes at the Winton-Salem Transportation Center)
- Handicapped Accessibility: Good at both venues
- Performances/Programs: Performance schedule is Tuesday–Sunday
- Ticket Prices: Adults $26–$32; Student/Senior $22–$24 with prices varying by seat selection. Preview shows are $12. Rush tickets are available for $20 ($15 for students) one hour before curtain. Groups of 10 or more receive discounted tickets for $12–$24, depending on group type and seating selection
- Membership: Page (up to $249); Apprentice ($250–$499); Supporting Role ($500–$999); Star ($1,000–$2,499); Director ($2,500–$4,999); President’s Roundtable ($5,000–$9,999); Trustees’ Circle ($10,000+). Depending on level, member benefits include invitations to exclusive events; recognition in playbills; access to the Friends Lounge at all NCShakes performances; complimentary tickets to performances; invitations to the Annual Friends Cocktail Dinner; preferred seating; invitations to Director’s Rehearsal Brunch; invitation to Opening Night Reception; behind-the-scenes rehearsal visit; personalized VIP concierge service; and more.