Suffolk University and Commonwealth Shakespeare Company Present The Last Will

The final installment of Distinguished Scholar in Residence Robert Brustein's trilogy imagines an ailing, confused William Shakespeare acting as if he were in one of his own plays

Commonwealth Shakespeare Company and Suffolk University will present The Last Will, the final installment Distinguished Scholar in Residence Robert Brustein’s trilogy about the life of William Shakespeare, at the Modern Theatre at Suffolk University from February 13 to 24, 2013.

The Last Will finds William Shakespeare retired at his country home in Stratford after decades of struggle and success in the city of London. 

He is in the last stages of a fatal illness, and as his deteriorating mind obliterates the distinction between fiction and fact, the playwright begins acting as a character in his own plays. 

Under the delusion that his wife, Anne, is deceiving him with his brother Gilbert, he tries to punish Anne for this imagined adultery by writing her out of his will. Richard Burbage, leader of Shakespeare's acting company, attempts to persuade him to return to London and to playwriting as Will wrestles with his suspicions, delusions, family resentments, his longing for forgiveness, and final testaments. 

The Last Will completes the Brustein trilogy presenting Shakespeare at various points in his career.

The cast includes Allyn Burrows as William Shakespeare, Brooke Adams as Anne Hathaway, Stacy Fisher as Judith Shakespeare, Merritt Janson as Susanna Shakespeare, Bill Meleady as Francis Collins, and Jeremiah Kissell as Richard Burbage.

The set design is by Eric Levenson, costume design by Nancy Leary, lighting design by Eric Southern and sound design by David Remedios.

Performance dates and times are 7 p.m. Feb. 13, 14, 20, 21; 8 p.m. Feb. 15, 16, 22, 23; and 3 p.m. Feb. 16, 17, 23, 24. The press opening is Feb. 15. 

Tickets, at $45 on opening and Saturday nights; $40 general, $30 seniors and $10 students, are available by calling 1-800-440-7654. The Modern Theatre is located at 525 Washington St. in Boston’s Theatre District.


Commonwealth Shakespeare Company, best known for its annual free performances on Boston Common, is a non-profit organization founded in 1996 dedicated to bringing the works of William Shakespeare in vital and contemporary productions to the people of Boston, and to educating Boston’s youth not only about Shakespeare but about their own potential for creativity.