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               excited to share this family friendly tradition with our NEPA audiences

A classic tradition that originated in the United Kingdom, Pantomime, or "panto," is a highly stylized theatrical performance rooted in the method of "commedia dell arte."
It is celebrated around the holidays and retells classic fairytales through farce, song, dance, and audience participation. Bundles of fun for all the family using comedy and glitz, pantomimes welcome all ages!


Performance Dates & Further Info


Thursday, December 15 @ 7:30pm

Friday, December 16 @ 10:00am [Schools Performance]

Friday, December 16 @ 7:30pm

Saturday, December 17 @ 2:00pm

Saturday, December 17@ 7:30pm

Sunday, December 18 @ 2:00pm

  • I'm a writer from outside the US, do I need to travel to Scranton in 2021 if I win?"
    No. If your play is picked as the 2021 Scratch Night winner, we will produce your play without needing your presence in the US. If you'd like to come visit us at the festival to see your show in action, however, you're more than welcome to!
  • I'm represented as a writer, can I apply?"
    Yes. As long as you are able to give us the sole permission to use your script for Scratch Night and the performances at Scranton Shakes, should it be picked, there is no problem for you to apply.
  • My script is not about theme of "Ghosts", can I still apply?"
    We'd prefer that our scripts have at least an underlying theme of ghosts, though it's important to point out is doesn't have to be the classic person under a white sheet!!
  • Why is there a fee to apply for Scranton Scratch Night?
    We charge a minimal fee of $5 to help pay for our wonderful script readers and ensure that we have the time and resources to give you feedback on your submission.
  • Will I be able to perform in Scranton Shakes’ other shows?
    There may be potential opportunities for students to be considered for roles in Scranton Shakes’ mainstage productions. Please indicate your interest in your application. This additional opportunity is not included in the Youth Ensemble programming and is completely optional/separate. Students will be cast at the discretion of the director for that show just like any other professional production.
  • Can you explain this new Youth Ensemble set-up?
    At Scranton Shakes, our Youth Ensemble students are a single, collaborative entity. Our previous model included preparation for multiple elements at once - our cabaret, masterclasses, rehearsals, etc. All students are a valuable asset to the Youth Ensemble, no matter what their role, a pillar of our mission that we instill in our students and they embrace wholeheartedly. This new breakdown of scheduling the programs is an invitation to students to focus on one element at a time, strengthening their skillset, and is feedback we’ve been asked to implement from our previous program participants. The Youth Ensemble at large is the perfect space for students who have never done theater before and are looking to learn the basics; for students who don’t have the time to commit to a full production; for students who are unsure if they are interested in performance or tech; for students who want to better their skills before jumping into the intense rehearsal process; for students who are used to performing in shows and need a reset to focus on the foundation of their artistry. We hope that students who are not cast in the full production take full advantage of the other aspects of the Youth Ensemble program as the opportunity to grow into the performer they are meant to be.
  • What if I can’t afford the tuition fee?
    Accessible theatre is one of the founding purposes of Scranton Shakespeare Festival. If you are in need of a scholarship to cover the cost of this program, please note in your application that you are interested in being considered. Only a limited amount of scholarships are available. At this time, we regret that we are only able to provide scholarships for our high school programming.
  • I'm unfamiliar with Shakespeare and don't think I would like it. Why should I perform it?
    Hear what our students have to say about performing Shakespeare!
  • What is the time commitment of this program?
    Please visit each individual program page for specific time commitments. The basic schedule of Youth Ensemble middle school and high school acting programs is M-F 10am-5pm. Schedules are subject to change. Orchestra and Designer programs' schedules are subject to change based on the availability of the designers, students, and the production schedule.
  • Who is eligible to apply for the Scranton Shakes Youth Ensemble?
    Please see individual program breakdowns above for specific age requirements to participate in the Youth Ensemble's programs.
  • Do I need experience in theatre to participate?
    High School students who are passionate about a foundational program are encouraged to apply for our Youth Ensemble program. Students willing to commit to a full-length pre-professional production process who are looking to expand their practice more are encouraged to also audition for one or both of our productions. Middle School students do not need to have prior theatrical experience. Youth Orchestra instrumentalists should be proficient in their instrument enough to perform an entire musical theatre score. Youth Designers need not have prior experience to participate.
  • Is Panto suitable for the whole family?
    Yes! There are jokes aplenty for every member of the family.
  • I want to nominate one of my students to apply. Can I do that?
    We encourage all teachers and administrators to fill out our student nomination form linked above, which will prompt students to receive a message that they have been nominated by a faculty/staff member from their school.
  • Can I request an informational session for my students and I to learn more?
    Yes! Please fill out our informational session request form linked above and we will be happy to set up either a Zoom or in person meeting to talk more about our program with your students.
  • How can my school district sponsor my student(s) tuition?
    Of course! Thank you for your donation. Please coordinate with Lizzie Gumula at
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