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Our Artistic Director

Emily Mattina, Artistic Director of Shakesperience Productions

Emily Mattina, Artistic Director

The founder of Shakesperience, Ms. Mattina tirelessly guides the company to offering innovative touring productions, including a new program highlighting the culturally and historically rich neighborhoods of Waterbury, CT and starring its youngest residents.  In her 15 years of directing, her productions have headlined festivals, including Shakespeare in Library Park, Shakespeare in Hollow Park, Festival! Stratford, Shakespeare on the Shoreline, and Vintage Shakesperience, a tour of Connecticut’s wine trail.  Emily’s educational programs and public performances have received high acclaim and recognition, including enthusiastic reviews, presentations for Connecticut’s HOTS Schools, speaking and interviews for UCONN Theatre classes, and guest lectures for her alma mater, the University of New Hampshire.  

Ms. Mattina has worked as an actor, director, teaching artist, and arts administrator for companies and regional tours based in California, Connecticut, Minnesota, and New York.  She consults with other nonprofit arts groups regarding collaboration, outreach, education and positive company culture.  She is proudly listed on the Connecticut Office of the Arts Directory of Teaching Artists.  The New Haven Business Times named Ms. Mattina among the 2006 "Forty Under 40" for her professional success and community involvement in New Haven County.  Ms. Mattina also received the State of Connecticut’s 2015 Elizabeth L. Mahaffey Arts Administration Fellowship.  

Since attaining her M.A. in 17th Century English Literature with an emphasis on Shakespeare from the University of Newcastle-Upon-Tyne, England, Ms. Mattina has directed approximately half of Shakespeare’s canon at least once.  Her favorite ongoing creative endeavor is nurturing her two beautiful children, Thomas Charles and Viola Lucia.

Read the Women section cover article profiling Emily from the
May 12, 2009 Republican American newspaper.

Our Executive Director

Jeffrey Lapham, Executive Director is a co-founder of Shakesperience Productions, Inc. Having completed his entire primary education in the Milford, Connecticut public schools, he attended Hamilton College in Clinton, New York, where he earned a B.A. in Mathematics with minors in Technical Theater and Classical Studies in 1994. After graduation, Mr. Lapham worked in the scene shop of Long Wharf Theater for two years before joining the Youth Tour of the Merry-Go-Round Playhouse in 1996. Jeff served two years there as Production Manager and finished his sixth Summer Musical Season having ably filled the position of Technical Director.

While working on the production and management sides of Shakesperience in its infancy, Mr. Lapham worked as a freelance theatre technician throughout Connecticut, including at Long Wharf Theater, Hartford Stage Company, the Quick Center for the Arts at Fairfield University, the International Festival of Arts and Ideas, Yale Rep, and Goodspeed Opera, and several others. At the end of his freelance career, Mr. Lapham joined Cheney Designs in Bridgeport (now Bethel), where he worked on all aspects of props and scenery construction for commercial theatre, event, and video clients from a variety of business sectors.

From 2000-2003, Mr. Lapham served as the technical director for the Theater of the Performing Arts at Hartford's Learning Corridor, and as an Artist/Instructor in the Theater, Design & Production Department at the Greater Hartford Academy of the Arts (GHAA), both under the auspices of the Capitol Region Education Council (CREC). After nearly 4 years of teaching and technical directing, Jeff resigned from his CREC positions to fully assume his roles at Shakesperience, the rapidly expanding company he had co-founded in 1998.   In 2011, after Shakesperience constituted the mainstage act for Festival! Stratford (on the grounds of the American Shakespeare Festival Theater) for two years, Mr. Lapham served as the Executive Producer of that festival, leading that committee to double the event’s size and duration.

In 2007 his work for Shakesperience and the community was recognized by his selection for The New Haven Business Times list of “Forty Under Forty” business professionals in New Haven County.  He helped manage the Greater Waterbury/Litchfield Hills Arts and Culture Assessment, was 2008 Volunteer of the Year for Main Street Waterbury, and currently serves as Treasurer of the Arts & Culture Collaborative, the Waterbury region's arts council.

About Us

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Shakesperience Productions, Inc.
117 Bank Street, Waterbury, CT 06702
Phone: 203.754.2531

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