About Us

“Shakespeare Play On’s effort to bring Shakespeare back to Santa Cruz for 2014 amount to one of the most inspiring stories of artists and patrons working together thoughtfully that I have seen in many years. A place as beautiful as Santa Cruz deserves a writer a brilliant as Shakespeare thriving in its midst.”
James Bundy
Yale School of Drama Dean
Artistic Director, Yale Repertory Theater

Santa Cruz Shakespeare (SCS) is a new, independent non-profit theatre company rooted in Santa Cruz, California and dedicated to the plays of William Shakespeare and other dynamic playwrights whose work celebrates language. SCS will carry on the tradition of professional, thought-provoking and passionate theater in Santa Cruz.

SCS was funded by theatre-lovers in Santa Cruz and beyond after its predecessor, a 32-year old Shakespeare Festival affiliated with the University of California at Santa Cruz, closed in December 2013. Thanks to the generosity of its donors, and the fiscal sponsorship of Arts Council Santa Cruz County, SCS’s 2014 Summer Season is fully forward-funded. This means that all the money required for production this year is already in-hand. Simply put: ticket revenue, along with all donations and grants received after March 1, 2014, will help to ensure a 2015 season. As we are fond of saying, “we have thrown away the credit card and broken out the debit card.” It also means that in many ways our future success as a company rests in the hands of this community. If our audiences buy tickets to the season, donate, volunteer, and urge friends to do the same, Santa Cruz Shakespeare will not only survive, but thrive.

In addition to the summer repertory season, SCS is proud to interface with the community through a number of vital education and outreach initiatives including an Intern Program, the Don Rothman pre-show and post-show discussion talkbacks as well as Weekend with Shakespeare in conjunction with UCSC’s Associate Professor of Literature Sean Keilen and Professor Emeritus, Michael Warren.

Co-Artistic Director Mike Ryan said, "It is clear from the tremendous community response to our fundraising efforts that Santa Cruz loves its outdoor summer Shakespeare performances and we are delighted to bring them the high-quality productions and performances that they have come to expect. We also look forward to finding ways we can interact with the community and its businesses at large, ensuring that this remains theatre of and for the people of Santa Cruz."

Santa Cruz Shakespeare Core Staff

Mike Ryan
Artistic Director

Aimee Zygmonski
Managing Director

Alexis Rossini
Development Associate

Santa Cruz Shakespeare Board of Directors

Bill Richter, Chair
Renee Winter, Vice President
Jean Shimoguchi, Secretary
Eric Mendelson
Tamara Santos
Audrey Stanley
Rick Wright

Honorary Directors
Karen Sinsheimer
Audrey Stanley

Mailing Address & Phone:
Santa Cruz Shakespeare
500 Chestnut St, Ste 250
Santa Cruz, CA 95060

phone: 831-460-6396