“She approaches characters such as Iago and Hamlet in challenging and illuminating ways. It’s a pleasure to have this company member returning to share some master work.”– Claudia Alick, Oregon Shakespeare Festival
“Shakespeare and the Alchemy of Gender” by Lisa Wolpe, directed by Laurie Woolery, has played at the Oregon Shakespeare Festival; San Francisco Shakespeare Festival; Utah Shakespeare Festival; Colorado Shakespeare Festival; Orlando Shakespeare Festival; Shakespeare’s Birthplace Trust, The Rose Theater, King’s College, Royal Central School of Speech and Drama, U.K.; Bremer Shakespeare, Bremen, Germany; SpringWorks Festival, Ontario; Vancouver, B.C.; H.E.R.E. NYC; Whittier College, UC Santa Barbara; UC Irvine; and more. The show is coming to the Wanamaker Theater at The Globe Theatre, London, U.K., The Estates Theater in Prague for Prague Shakespeare Company, University of North Carolina, California State University, Boston University, and University of Georgia.
REVIEWS: Lisa Wolpe’s solo show brings wry humor and Shakespearean insight to a range of wrenchingly difficult subject matters, including sexism, domestic abuse, suicide, and the Holocaust. Weaving monologues from her favorite male Shakespeare roles with reflections on her family history, Wolpe explores her fascination with upending gender conventions as a way to reclaim power in the face of a traumatic past… it’s hard not to credit Wolpe for fearlessness, sincerity, and good humor. -The New Yorker
Ms. Wolpe demonstrates a fluid physicality and a soothing vocal expressiveness. Wolpe quite adeptly offers rich characterizations of some of those most illustrious roles. In addition she seamlessly switches to delivering revelatory reminiscences and concise analysis of the plays with élan that recalls Spalding Gray’s monologues. The combination of these elements yields to a wonderful performance.” -Darryl Reilly, Theaterscene.net
“Lisa Wolpe’s mesmerising performance celebrates Shakespeare’s language and shows the humanity of his writing. Wolpe finds solace in the Bard’s work whilst her family struggles to cope with their often tragic history. Bursting with energy but also mastering the gentler notes, Wolpe provides samples of her Shylock, Romeo, Juliet, Hamlet, Hermione, Richard III, and Prospero… The Rose Playhouse is the perfect site for Lisa Wolpe’s show – a celebration of Shakespeare’s humanism, love and life.” – A Younger Theatre, London U.K.
“As a visionary theatre artist, Wolpe is best known as the Producing Artistic Director of the LA Women’s Shakespeare Company. It’s an all-female company that spans across all ages and races. Wolpe’s intention is to bring enlightenment to her audiences… Regardless of how brushed up you are on your Shakespeare, it is impossible not to be touched by her heartfelt performance…” “Definitely a must-see for anyone interested in the development of Shakespeare productions in recent years and wanting to experience the work of one of the most notable proponents of cross-gender casting.” – The Play’s The Thing, London, U.K.
“In her show she certainly not only mapped but inhabited shifting realms of thought and myriad niches of human emotion. Such a joy and nourishment to see and hear Shakespeare played so truthfully and fully… Wolpe says: ‘If we can build empathy, we can invigorate the purpose of art, which is to create alliances that save lives and offer hope.” -Howlround
“Wolpe knows how to tell stories, personal and Shakespearean, and she does so with power and panache. Her Romeo is bold and flirtatious, Hamlet is wracked with uncertainty and Shylock reveals a determined, well-reasoned, revengeful soul…Through the words of Shakespeare, Ms. Wolpe tackles contemporary political and social issues, offers perspectives on the haunting influences of war, violence and victimization and provides a glimpse of the resilience, hope and humanity that makes a life worth living. She’s equally adept at telling her own story and the many tales told together result in an engaging, heartrending, satisfying time in the theatre. It was unexpectedly gut-wrenching, at the same time fascinating, thought-provoking, and in fact transcendent… I just hope Vancouver gets another chance to see this show, and that I do.” – Vancouver Press, B.C.