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“My students walked away from the program with an increased appreciation of Shakespeare. They were enthralled...”

— Rebecca Jo DiSaia, Harpers Ferry High School

“His ability to transform from King Lear to Edward IV to Falstaff with only a turn or brief exit to stage right exhibits a versatility that aids audience understanding of the depth and complexities of Shakespeare’s talent. This performance helped students understand Shakespeare’s language more easily. Their ‘talk back’ with Mr. Rolling revealed both a greater appreciation of the playwright/poet and of the actor who today still masters his lines.”

— Mary Brock, Arts & Science Center, Pine Bluff, AK

Cultural Center to host free Shakespearean master class for middle school students

The West Virginia Division of Culture and History will present a free master class led by Shakespearean actor Hubert Rolling on Wednesday, Nov. 7, in the West Virginia State Theater of the Cultural Center, State Capitol Complex, Charleston. The hour-long session will begin at 9 a.m. and will be repeated at 11 a.m. Geared for middle school students, the master class is free. Reservations will be accepted from teachers on a first-come, first-served basis.

During the program, entitled “This Huge Stage,” Rolling will perform selections from some of Shakespeare’s best-known monologues, portraying a variety of male characters including Richard III, Falstaff, Julius Caesar, Macbeth, Hamlet, Edward IV, Mark Antony and King Lear. He also will recite some of the playwright’s sonnets. At the conclusion of the class, Rolling will host a “talk back” session, discussing Shakespeare and answering questions from the students.

A native of Martinsburg, Rolling has produced and directed more than 100 shows, including festivals for community and stock theaters across the country. He has taken an active national role in creatively teaching young people about Shakespeare. In addition to the master classes, he will offer a free public performance at 7 p.m. on Wednesday, Nov. 7, at the Cultural Center.

For more information about Rolling’s performances for school groups or to make reservations, call Bil Lepp at (304) 558-0220, ext. 131, or e-mail The West Virginia Division of Culture and History, an agency of the West Virginia Department of Education and the Arts, brings together the state’s past, present and future through programs and services in the areas of archives and history, the arts, historic preservation and museums. The Cultural Center is West Virginia’s official showcase for the arts. Visit the Division’s website at for more information about programs of the Division. The Division of Culture and History is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer.