Stratford Festival

(PR Consultant) June to October 2008


With William Shakespeare as its foundation, the Stratford Festival aims to set the standard for classical theatre in North America. Embracing the heritage of tradition and innovation, it seeks to bring classical and contemporary theatre alive for an increasingly diverse audience.


In 2008, in order to increase its commitment to the diversity of its artists and the repertoire it presents on its stages, the Festival presented the play “Palmer Park.” Directed by Stratford’s guest African American director, Ron Parson, the play featured a cast of majority actors of color at its studio theatre. “Palmer Park,” focused on two professional couples, one black and the other white, who become neighbors after the race riots of 1967 in the Detroit neighborhood. Woods was hired to get buy-in for the play from Detroit “influencers” and to create a strong publicity program to encourage attendance by Detroit residents.


Woods’ main goal was to demystify and familiarize the Detroit community about the Stratford Festival venue (located in Canada about 1 ½ hrs from Detroit). In her media release, she established the play as a must-attend event that brought attention to an affluent Detroit neighborhood to drive residents to purchase tickets and learn more about the play.


  • Assisted in development of collateral materials (i.e., website, ads, evites) and distribution to targeted group
  • Obtained 14 media hits including print, radio and online
  • Served as a Detroit-area guide/briefing source for the play Director Ron Parson, by accompanying him to meetings with Detroit area influencers and to media interviews
  • Obtained an increase in attendance for first-time attendees from Detroit to the festival.

"Cherrie Woods helped us to heighten awareness of the Palmer Park play and the Stratford Shakespeare Festival in Detroit. I would hire her again to augment our media relations efforts...– Anita Gaffney - Administrative Director, Stratford Shakespeare Festival

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