Feast Of Crispian is a non-profit organization that brings professional actors
and veterans together to strengthen the emotional resources they need
to overcome trauma and reintegration issues.


How we work

Using basic acting tools and techniques and the powerful words and stories of William Shakespeare, we help these wounded warriors be heard and seen in the expression of their thoughts and feelings. This allows them to more easily hear, see and respect the thoughts and feelings of others, reconnecting them with their own sense of self worth and with their communities

The wounds are deep

Our country is currently in a crisis of need for programs that help veterans who are returning from war with wounds that keep them from successfully reconnecting with family, employment and community. Although the understanding of the hidden wounds, such as PTSD, is growing and the stigma of such wounds is decreasing, the need for a variety of programs that help these men and women is enormous. Feast of Crispian is a unique program that reaches these inner wounds in a wide range of ways.

Rekindling the band of brothers

Through specially modified acting techniques, we are able to immediately get our vets up on stage, speaking, moving and making the emotional connections that telling these stories requires. They are once again in a tight unit – a “band of brothers” – where the safety and well-being of the individual is the concern and the duty of the whole group. We use physical and emotional exercises and honest discussion to further strengthen the service member’s ability to connect with others. Experiencing a wide range of emotions is at the heart of a satisfying and happy life.


Weekly Meeting, 4:00 - 6:00 St John's Church, 5500 W. Greenfield Avenue
Socialize, work on scenes, learn, discuss. Drop-ins welcome. READ MORE


We train and advise others

FoC has delivered workshops and trainings across the country including:

  • American Lake VA hospital, Tacoma, WA

  • International Trauma Conference, Boston, MA

  • National Shakespeare in the Prisons Conference, Notre Dame University

  • National Symposium on Responsibility, Morality and the Costs of War, Ohio State University

  • Trauma and Synchrony workshop with internationally renowned trauma researcher Dr. Bessel van der Kolk at the Garrison Institute of New York


Our First National Veterans Theater Festival had a great run in May 2019

Presented by Feast of Crispian and Milwaukee Repertory Theater. Check out the full details of the plays and the presenting actors and/or companies in our Festival section.


Henry V


This day is called the feast of Crispian:

He that outlives this day, and comes safe home,

Will stand a tip-toe when this day is named,

And rouse him at the name of Crispian.


He that shall see this day, and live old age,

Will yearly on the vigil feast his neighbours,

And say 'To-morrow is Saint Crispian:'

Then will he strip his sleeve and show his scars.


And say 'These wounds I had on Crispin's day.

'Old men forget: yet all shall be forgot, 


But he'll remember with advantages

What feats he did that day:

This story shall the good man teach his son;


And Crispin Crispian shall ne'er go by, 

From this day to the ending of the world,

But we in it shall be remember'd;


We few, we happy few, we band of brothers;

For he to-day that sheds his blood with me

Shall be my brother; be he ne'er so vile,


This day shall gentle his condition:

And gentlemen in England now a-bed 

Shall think themselves accursed they were not here,

And hold their manhoods cheap whiles any speaks

That fought with us upon Saint Crispin's day.

Co-founders & Directors of Feast of Crispian - Nancy Smith-Watson, Jim Tasse, Bill Watson

Co-founders & Directors of Feast of Crispian - Nancy Smith-Watson, Jim Tasse, Bill Watson



Nancy Smith-Watson is an actor, a trauma informed somatic bodyworker and co-founder/director of Feast of Crispian. Ms. Smith-Watson has a BA in Drama from the University of Washington and did her professional training at Circle in the Square professional conservatory in New York City, where her teachers included Nikos Psacharopoulos, founding artistic director of Williamstown Theater Festival, and Michael Kahn, artistic director of The Shakespeare Theater in Washington D.C. While working as a professional actress, Ms. Smith-Watson also trained in massage and somatic bodywork therapies. She has 30 years experience as a Hakomi Bodyworker, and is trained in Integrative Somatics from Sensorimotor Psychotherapy developer, Pat Ogden. For seven years, Ms. Smith-Watson taught the Introduction to Somatics at Big Sky Somatic Institute, in Helena, MT. In 2013, she received director training from Shakespeare & Co. and returned home to Milwaukee to launch Feast of Crispian – Shakespeare with Veterans.

Jim Tasse is an actor, director, teacher and a Vietnam Era Veteran, serving in the US Navy as a Hospital Corpsman from 1971-1975. He has performed with many Milwaukee theatre companies including Milwaukee Chamber Theatre, The Milwaukee Rep, Next Act and In Tandem.  He has explored classical texts as a director and teacher and has acted with Milwaukee Shakespeare, The Illinois Shakespeare Festival and The Feast of Crispian. He is currently a Senior Lecturer at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.  He also served as Associate Artistic Director for Milwaukee Chamber Theatre. He trained with UW-M’s Professional Theatre Training Program and Shakespeare & Company in Lenox, MA.

Bill Watson is an actor, director, and teacher of acting and theatre for four university faculties over 30 years. He is currently an Associate Professor of Theatre at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee where he was hired in 2005 to create an undergraduate Bachelor of Fine Arts in acting degree program that he headed for ten years before co-founding and facilitating, training and directing for Feast of Crispian. He has taught Shakespeare text and performance, for over 30 years and has directed and acted professionally in dozens of Shakespeare productions, most recently working for and training with Shakespeare and Company in Lenox, MA. Locally, he has acted with First Stage, Milwaukee Chamber Theatre and In Tandem theaters, and directed for Marquette University, UWM and Feast of Crispian. Bill has also trained in psychotherapeutic skills with Phil Del Prince of the Hakomi Institute. He has a Master of Fine Arts from the University of Washington, a Bachelor of Science from Northwestern University.