Image of First Folio, Shakespeare
Henry Kemp-Blair Shakespeare Festival

» Festival Information

Students perform as witches from Macbeth We welcome all participating schools in the audience during presentations.


There is no charge. Participants are guests of Chapman University.

Enrollment Standards

We limit the number of participating schools to 25 for Friday workshops and Saturday presentations.

Each participating school is requested to bring no more than 15 students to the festival.


The Festival is held at Chapman University, in the Waltmar Theatre in Moulton Hall. Visit our campus map for driving directions.


Please check-in at the Waltmar Theatre Lobby:

  • Friday: 11:00 a.m. - 1 p.m.
  • Saturday: 7:30 a.m. - 9 a.m.

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Presentation Rules

We will strictly enforce the time limits for scene and monologue presentations in the spirit of fairness. Performance times will only occur on Saturday.

  • man performs in playScene presentations are performed on the Waltmar Theatre stage. Scenes will be presented on the forestage, which is 35 feet wide by 15 feet deep, backed by a black curtain. Dimensions will be provided if there is a set onstage. Entrances are available stage right and left. Only one scene may be presented from each high school, and it can be no longer than eight minutes. It may include as many as 15 students.
  • Monologue presentations are in our 50-seat “black box” studio theatre, Moulton Hall 149. The playing area is 22 feet wide by 18 feet deep. Two monologues may be submitted from each high school. Each can be no longer than two minutes.
  • Lighting for both scene and monologue presentations:  After a presentation has been announced by the M.C., the stage lights will fade out and remain dark for ten seconds. During this time the actor/s may take their place/s on stage if they wish or they may wait for the lights to come up and then enter in light. No lights will be lowered at the end of a scene unless cued by a school’s stage manager.
  • Costumes, makeup and props must be provided by the performance groups. Do not feel obligated to use Elizabethan garb. Successful past scenes have included a variety of period and contemporary dress.
  • Sound support is not offered. If you require sound, please bring your own portable equipment.
  • Students participate in a Shakespearean workshopWe urge groups NOT to bring scenery unless it is free standing, and can be erected in 2 minutes. Basic tables and chairs will be provided. NO LIQUIDS, DIRT, GLITTER, SPRAY, DRY ICE OR FIRE IS ALLOWED ON THE STAGE. Please check with the tournament director about any substances you wish to bring onstage.
  • Design presentations will consist of a 10-minute presentation period in one of Moulton Hall's classroom facilities where participants may show a 3D model or drawing of a set, costume, lighting or make-up design for one of two plays (Antony and Cleopatra or Taming of the Shrew). Participants should be prepared with a written portion of their presentation (does not need to be memorized) and be able to answer questions with clarity. Following their presentation, two judges will ask questions regarding the design. Due to the low number of design presentations, these will only occur in the afternoon portion of Saturday.
  • Makeup and dressing facilities are provided.

Location & Parking

Student delivers a rousing monologueThe Festival is located on the Chapman University campus in Orange, CA in the Waltmar Theatre, within Moulton Hall. Moulton Hall is easily accessible from the street and campus at the juncture of Palm Street and Center Street. Please see our campus map for driving directions.

Car Parking

There is no free parking on the Chapman campus. Pre-registered participant schools will be issued electronic parking passes through Chapman Public Safety for the time they will be on campus. Visitors may only park in the Dodge College Lot or West Campus Structure on Friday, and the Barrera Structure (corner of Sycamore and Lemon) or the Lastinger Structure (beneath the Athletic Field, access from Walnut Avenue) on Saturday. All visitors must display a valid, short-term parking permit, which may be purchased from kiosks within the parking areas. Always check our campus website for the latest information.

Parking across the street from the University or in the nearby neighborhood is illegal and the city will ticket your car. You may park along the University perimeter on Palm or Center Streets right by the Waltmar Theatre, if available. You may unload equipment and passengers at the Waltmar steps and then park in designated areas.

Bus Parking

If you are bringing a school bus we ask that you clearly indicate this when you register so that special parking can be arranged.