From Shakespeare to the West End Theatre District


Theatre 475: Studies in London Theatre, 3 credits (CRN 20004)


Permission of Instructor


A limited number of $400 scholarships are available and will be awarded on a competitive basis.. To be considered eligible for scholarship consideration, applicants must:  be matriculated at CCSU, be enrolled in at least 3 credits of coursework associated with the Course Abroad, have a minimum GPA of 2.50, and not receive tuition remission/waivers.

Based in London,this program  will afford participants the opportunity to attend the finest English theatres, including the Royal Shakespeare Company, the West End, the Barbican Center,the National, and the Old Vic. In addition to productions of Shakespeare, West End Theatre and other classics, students will select performances  of particular interest to them to see.

While in London,students  will visit many historical locations including the Tower of London, Blackfriars,Saint James and Whitehall, Hampton Court, the Inns of Count and London Bridge, Westminster Abbey,St. Paul's Cathedral, Bankside,and the New Globe Theatre. These visits will be coordinated  with a historical theme based on events in history and how it affected theatre through  the years. Discussions will be held at key locations as students walk through the city.  There will also be lectures and workshops with leading theatre  professionals working in London for the students to attend.

The Globe Theatre was built by Lord Chamberlain's Men an acting troop, from the remains of a theatre  built 21years earlier.  The original theatre  was built in 1559, and one of the first traditional open air play houses. Students will learn about the many fires and how the Puritans closed down all London theatres permanently in 1642.  The Globe Theatre was torn down in 1644.  Shakespeare's Globe, although it is not the original,is  built  on the original plot of land 750 feet from the site of the original theatre  and opened to the public in 1997, with a production of Henry V. Shakespeare's Globes is an academic approximation based on available evidence of the 1599 and 1614 buildings.  Although it is too chilly to see a show this time of year outside, many theatres are producing Shakespeare's work.

Taking tours such as the one we will take at Theatre Royal is just one of many historic Theatres students will get an opportunity to see. Theatre Royal, on Drury Lane, is one of London's oldest and most prestigious theatres, crammed with tradition, and not all of it respectable.  King George Ill frequented the theatre, but had a separate box seat from the prince because of his son's misbehavior. This, the fourth theatre on the site, dates from 1812; the first being built  in 1663.  They claim to have produced the first musical.  Nearly every star of London theatre  has taken the stage here at some point  in time which makes it so reputable. The Theatre Royal is now owned by composer Andrew Lloyd Webber.

Students will also have the opportunity to see a large selection of museums and public institutions while abroad.  Daily classes will meet in locations related to historic events of theatre  or history that affected theatre  in its current time.  The royal family for generations has always been a patron of the arts; we will learn about their attendance and contributions to the various theatres around the city.  A visit to Buckingham Palace will show the loyalty and commitment the country has to the Royal Family. There will be opportunity to watch the changing of the guards as the Foot Guards provide a colorful display in their red tunics and bearskins and are accompanied by the royal band throughout the ceremony.  Buckingham Palace is not the only place students will get to see the Foot Guards, with a short walk over to the Horse Guards Parade field students can watch Calvary Practice and watch the Foot Guards patrol the premises.

One of the exciting classes student will partake in is learning about current theatre in London. They will read the most current Time Out or London Standard Reviews, pick a show, and discover the many possibilities of purchasing tickets.  Even if the show is sold out,there may be standing room only for a reduced ticket price.  They will get to experience it all, one evening of the show of their own choosing which will be selected on the fringe of the theatre  district. Some of the highest rated theatres may be in a pub or basement of a restaurant  or hotel.

See some of the world's  oldest monuments  and cities!  A scenic bus ride through the country side will take students out of the city for a day. Stonehenge, one of the most famous sites in the world, is believed to have been constructed  around 2200BC. Its original purpose is unclear to anyone,but some have speculated that it was a temple made for the worship of ancient deities. It has been called an astronomical observatory  for marking significant events on the prehistoric  calendar. Others claim that it was a sacred site for the burial of high-ranking citizens from the societies of long ago. The Bath was established by the Romans in 60 B.C.,settled in the county of Somerset. The city was built in the valley River Avon on hot springs. Students will tour the 2000 year old bath houses and they may even drink the water.

Appreciation for theatre is suggested, but no prior theatrical experience is required.

Registration Information and Program Costs

The cost of the travel program includes round-trip airport transfers in the U.S. and abroad, economy-class international airfare, multiple-occupancy accommodations, and ground transportation and entrance fees to all required site visits. All personal expenses (i.e., meals, medical, souvenirs, laundry, telephone, etc.) are not included.   Course tuition is not included in the Course Abroad program fee.

Fulfillment of the University's International Requirement: 

All credits earned overseas on a CCSU-sponsored study abroad program, including courses offered in conjunction with Course Abroad programs, automatically receive "I Designation" and count toward fulfillment of the University's General Education International Requirement.

Registration Form


$2,695 per person

Travel Dates

December 29 - January  8, 2014

Faculty Director

Prof. Scott Bartley
Theatre Department
(860) 832-3154

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