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Shakespeare Festival This Weekend in Pottsville

POTTSVILLE, Pa. — For the past four summers, Schuylkill Free Shakespeare puts on free Shakespeare productions at the Yuengling Mansion in Pottsville and t...

POTTSVILLE, Pa. -- For the past four summers, Schuylkill Free Shakespeare puts on free Shakespeare productions at the Yuengling Mansion in Pottsville and to give you a winter fix this weekend, there will be three more Shakespeare plays featuring three local high schools.

"In high school, many kids only get to study Shakespeare when they're sitting behind a desk, and they can do all of the analysis of all the rhetoric. There's a lot of value in that, but I find there's a lot of value in education through performance," said Emily Ehlinger, artistic director of Schuylkill Free Shakespeare.

This Saturday at the Majestic Theater in Pottsville, there will be a Shakespeare festival that features three performances from Schuylkill Haven, Pottsville Area, and Nativity BVM High Schools.

"To go out there on stage and to portray a role and do things you'd never do in everyday life and do that in front of a whole bunch of people, really letting yourself get out there and be yourself. It's really rewarding," said Nativity BVM sophomore Jacob Challenger.

The plays will benefit Schuylkill Free Shakespeare, a nonprofit production company based in Pottsville, and will be free to attend for all students.

Newswatch 16 caught up with some crew members from Nativity who are excited about Saturday.

"I found my identity and who I am through drama club and theater, and it really helped me find myself, be confident enough, it helped me with public speaking," said senior Evelyn Datte.

"I was a little hesitant at first because I've seen other performances, and it looked intimidating because it's a completely different language. Then I had a small role last year, and I was like, 'Oh, this isn't bad!'" said freshman Riley McDonald.

Schuylkill Haven will kick off the Shakespeare festival on Saturday at noon, Pottsville will go on stage at 3 p.m., and Nativity BVM will round out everything at 6 p.m. at the Majestic Theater on North Centre Street in Pottsville. Tickets will be $10 for the public.