We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Amazing performance in an uncomfortable setting”

American Shakespeare Center
Ranked #1 of 35 things to do in Staunton
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Owner description: The Blackfriars Playhouse is the world's only re-creation of Shakespeare's indoor theatre. "Stunning", says Frommer's. Located in historic downtown Staunton, VA, this 300-seat Renaissance theatre offers productions of Shakespeare and classic plays year round that the Washington Post says are "shamelessly entertaining" and the Boston Globe says are "phenomenal...bursting with energy”.
Useful Information: Activities for older children
Fairfax, Virginia
Level Contributor
217 reviews
111 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 89 helpful votes
“Amazing performance in an uncomfortable setting”
Reviewed March 17, 2013

A wonderful experience even for someone who isn't crazy about plays. It's particularly interesting to see how they play was presented during Shakespearean times. The building is beautiful and well put together. The actors were superb and put on a quality performance. The major complaint was the incredible uncomfortable seating. We were in the balcony so maybe we should have expected it, but the people downstairs didn't look much comfier with their seatbacks. The people sitting on the stage with stools looked even worse. Despite moving around, by the end, my back was killing me and I only wanted to get out of there. The other minor complaint was beverages/snacks available. They were of relatively low quality but then at a high price. However, this wasn't a major inconvenience. A great performance, but the creature comforts really weren't there.

Visited March 2013
1 Thank Levi N
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a Review

699 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • Any
English first
Richmond, Virginia, United States
Level Contributor
99 reviews
40 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 126 helpful votes
“Lots of Fun”
Reviewed March 14, 2013

The actors do a great job involving the audience and doing different things to be entertaining. I guess it all depends on the play whether you like it or not but atmosphere and actors are great!!

Visited February 2013
Thank Tony0146484
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Staunton, Virginia
Level Contributor
34 reviews
17 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
“A must -Do visit”
Reviewed February 25, 2013

High quality theatre experiences that allow one to see three different plays a week sometimes. All performances are by the same troupe who provide lively preshow music as well as excellent acting. If you thought you couldn't get your head around Shakespeare don't be put off. This co. makes it very accessible.

Visited February 2013
Thank janly j
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Johnstown, Pennsylvania
Level Contributor
68 reviews
28 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 25 helpful votes
“authentic Shakespeare in Virginia!”
Reviewed February 25, 2013

The Blackfriar theater, home of the American Shakespeare Company, is located in Staunton, VA.
Plays, both Shakespeare's and others from that period, are performed in a theater similar to the one in which Shakespeare would have offered his productions. The acting is terrific with high energy, and the audience is often integrated into the performances (especially if you're sitting on the stools right on stage. The cast provides live music before the play and during intermission. Some performances are "pay as you will", meaning you don't pay until the show ends and then it's up to you to pay whatever you want! We've been 4 or 5 times, have seen about 12 productions and have never been disappointed. Staunton's visitors' center also offers trolley and walking tours of the town from April to October.

Visited February 2013
Thank Jill1207W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Washington DC, District of Columbia
Level Contributor
30 reviews
11 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
“Hail Caesar!!!”
Reviewed February 25, 2013

We went to see Julius Caesar at the Blackfriars Playhouse. It was awesome. The prequel of the performance, the singing, the clapping, the stomping, the shouting. It was good fun. The play and the players were amazing. We can not wait to go back again.

Visited February 2013
Thank MelanieW1004
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers who viewed American Shakespeare Center also viewed


Been to American Shakespeare Center? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Owners: What's your side of the story?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing