As Macbeth, Dario Peña was frightening. Being at once lovable and stern, we watched as ambition ate at his soul.Mitch Horn, The Record Review


Shakespeare’s plays have powerful universal themes that resonate in prison, particularly about the consequences of deception, betrayal and violence.

They abound with the disastrous combination of misunderstandings and hot-headed characters who rationalize their choices and struggle with their consciences, coping with loss, longing, jealousy and anger.

We explore these themes, analyze dramatic structure and discover Shakespeare’s rich language, texture and rhythms.

Dante’s Inferno

Dante writes ‘Halfway through the course of my pathetic life I woke up and I found myself in a stupor.’ I read that part and it jumped out to me, because when he says ‘woke up’ I didn’t take that in a literal sense, I took that in the sense of him becoming conscious. I wrote a poem that was inspired by that, called ‘Once I Awoke’ – it’s me coming to the realization that I’m better than this. I don’t belong here. I’m coming out of that darkness, that sleeping state, that mental death.RTA prisoner-participant, Sing Sing