Dramatic Redemption: 'Shakespeare Behind Bars'

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Inmate Hal Cobb closes a play with a speech

Inmate Hal Cobb closes a play with a speech in a scene from Shakespeare Behind Bars. Philomath Films hide caption

itoggle caption Philomath Films

The plot of William Shakespeare's last play, The Tempest, has many similarities to life inside the Luther Luckett Correctional Complex in Kentucky.

In the play, hardened criminals find themselves trapped on a deserted island. They fight to survive, find meaning in their lives and look for forgiveness from the people they have wronged.

At the prison, actor and director Curt Toftleland has been using the words of the Bard to teach inmates about hope, redemption and maybe about themselves.

For a full year, documentary filmmakers followed the lives of Toftleland, inmate Hal Cobb and fellow convict thespians as they prepared to perform The Tempest.

Their odyssey is captured in Shakespeare Behind Bars, an award-winning documentary recently released on DVD.

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