The Tempest

William Shakespeare's play performed outdoors at Jamestown Settlement September 14-16 and 21-23

An adaption of William Shakespeare’s “The Tempest” will be performed aboard Jamestown Settlement’s re-creation of the Susan Constant and in the re-created colonial fort on six evenings — September 14, 15, and 16, and September 21, 22 and 23, 2017.

All performances are sold out.

The production is being presented by The Guild of the Virginia Shakespeare Festival and the Jamestown-Yorktown Foundation, the state agency that administers Jamestown Settlement living-history museum. The performance is sponsored by the 2019 Commemoration, AMERICAN EVOLUTION.

The adaptation will depict how colonists in America’s first permanent English settlement would have staged their own production of Shakespeare’s “The Tempest,” complete with music and dance.

Doors open at 6 p.m. An Elizabethan Fair pre-show at the ships’ pier will set the stage for the outdoor drama, which will begin at 7 p.m. aboard Jamestown Settlement’s Susan Constant, where the events of the storm will unfold. A procession of dancers and music will move the drama to the re-created colonial fort, where the play will resume at 7:45 p.m.

There is a strong historical connection between the Jamestown Colony and Shakespeare’s play.  In 1609, the Sea Venture, an English ship bound for Jamestown, wrecked on the unknown island of Bermuda. An account of how the Sea Venture’s passengers survived on the strange and magical island provided the inspiration for Shakespeare’s enchanted setting in “The Tempest.”

Tickets for All Performances are Sold Out

Space is limited to 150 for each performance. Tickets are $20 for adults, and $18 for ages 6-16, seniors age 62 and older, and groups of 15 or more. Admission is free for children under 6.

What to Know Before the Show
2019 logoAbout the Sponsor

The 2019 Commemoration, AMERICAN EVOLUTION™, highlights events that occurred in Virginia in 1619 that continue to influence America today. Featured programs, events and legacy projects will position Virginia as a leader in education, tourism and economic development. AMERICAN EVOLUTION™ commemorates the ongoing journey toward the key ideals of democracy, diversity and opportunity. Learn more at


Jamestown Settlement, a living-history museum of 17th-century Virginia, is located at State Route 31 and the Colonial Parkway (2110 Jamestown Road) south of Williamsburg.


Updated September 12, 2017