American Shakespeare Center/Blackfriars Playhouse

10 S. Market Street


The American Shakespeare Center recovers the joys and accessibility of Shakespeare's theatre, language, and humanity by exploring the English Renaissance stage and its practices through performance and education.

Who We Are

The American Shakespeare Center -- through its performances, theatres, exhibitions, and educational programs -- seeks to make Shakespeare, the joys of theatre and language, and the communal experience of the Renaissance stage accessible to all. By re-creating Renaissance conditions of performance, the ASC explores its repertory of plays for a better understanding of these great works and of the human theatrical enterprise past, present, and future.

Blackfriars Playhouse, Staunton, Virginia

In our hometown of Staunton, Virginia, the ASC has constructed a re-creation of Shakespeare's original indoor theatre, the Blackfriars Playhouse, and also has plans to build an open-air re-creation of London's second Globe Theatre, which was built in 1614 after the original 1599 structure burned to the ground. By following the basic principles of Renaissance theatrical production, we give our audiences some of the pleasures that an Elizabethan playgoer would have enjoyed.


John Knaus

Saturday, Sep. 9, 2017

Very well done! Lots of passion and professionalism. This shows you how Shakespeare needs to be interpreted; not highbrow, but accurately and with unbridled enthusiasm.

Barbara Greene

Sunday, Aug. 20, 2017

Don't think you like Shakespeare? Give this a try! They do the performances in such an accessible way, you'll wonder what you've been missing all these years. And the Blackfriar's Playhouse alone is worth the visit.

Sail Filmnacht

Saturday, Aug. 26, 2017

Absolutely fantastic experience! Any show is bound to be a must-see. Excellent cast and performance, loved the venue.

Devon Miller

Monday, June 19, 2017

We saw Much Ado About Nothing. I laughed so much and the musical interludes are completely charming. One of my most enjoyable preforming arts experiences.

Tina Kellogg

Saturday, June 17, 2017

This venue is awesome! The actors are superb. Anytime you are anywhere near the area this is a must see! This is my third play and have seen 2 rehearsals. So very imteresting!