Acting Workshops in Schools

Acting Shakespeare – Workshops for Schools (Auckland, New Zealand)


Performance of Shakespeare workshops that support units and credits for both Drama and English students studying Shakespeare.

Taught in an engaging, unique,  fun, dynamic and informative manner.

Students will be very active, physically explore the texts, understand how the text is written to enhance performance; iambic pentameter, prose, stage directions, shared iambic lines,  rhyming couplets, character, use of vowels and consonants, language devices, theme, status and the great chain of being, asides, soliloquy. Students with movement challenges will be able to explore the language, ideas and techniques with the utmost care and equal support.

Length of workshops: can be flexible. Time limits can vary to fit into the school calendar and schedule.

One off or a series of:

One and a 1/2  or,

Two hour,

Or half day

Or Weekend/days…

Performance of Shakespeare workshops.

Learning Outcomes:

Enriches and enhances the students capabilities and potential of meeting drama achievement standards such as close reading of unfamiliar texts in English and and Drama standards for example, 91514, 91219, 91213, 91218, 91216 and others with convincing and compelling work.

Additional Learning Outcomes:

Students learn to actively and confidently participate in the speaking and exploration of Shakespearean/unfamiliar texts.

Enhances listening and communication skills of group work, full ensemble play and paired scene work.

Fosters creativity, individual expression, playfulness, engagement with the text via the inherent qualities of the language and via drama techniques. Workshops encourage critical thinking level and cooperation and collaboration with fellow actors.

Workshops grow a students understanding of the Elizabethan theater form and of Shakespeare’s literary techniques e.g., use of rhythm and language devices, iambic and prose, layers of meaning with a word or full text and how to apply this knowledge in performance to be effective and engaging.

Teaches students to understand the given circumstances of a scene and how to use it to inform their playing.

Other Workshops:


Screen Acting workshops – one off, half day, two hour introduction, or a series of workshops.

Holiday programs able to be brought into schools.

When: At request by schools, flexible times and class lengths can be arranged, minimum of a two hour workshop to understand basic technique.


Kirsty Hamilton is a graduate of Toi Whakaari the New Zealand Drama School, SGCNZ Globe Fellow 2007, Graduate European Act 2009 through the London Actors Centre in Association with RADA. She holds a MA in Creative Writing from the International Institute of Modern Letters at Victoria University and a BA Honors Screen Production from Auckland University.  She was a chosen Participant Director and Editors Guild Female Film Incubator 2016, and a Chosen New Zealand Film Commission Melbourne International Film Festival 2016 participant. Kirsty is a passionate, writer, actress, director, producer, voice, and acting teacher. Her last short film, Cold, premiered at the Sandy Dennis Film Festival in 2019. She is developing a fifth short film (2026), feature screenplay (2027) and is working on a short documentary about toxic Aspergillus mold infection and damp housing (2024/2025). Kirsty currently teaches full time secondary school drama from years 7 through 13 as well as NCEA scholarship drama.


‘She taught me techniques about how to explore that I could immediately put to use… the exercises were varied and stretched my understanding of the text by pushing it in many different directions, the result was a deep exploration of text I had only read in one way previously’.  – Rachel Dyson McGregor, Unitec graduate and actress.

‘It stopped me thinking of Shakespeare as an alien language and helped me get into my character’. – Student, Epsom Normal Primary.