Learning the language of Shakespeare
It was their first attempt at Shakespeare, but it won’t be their last. Reis Azlan (Don Pedro), Jamie Barr (Claudio) and James Currie (Benedick) didn’t know the story of Much Ado About Nothing , but they all love acting and knew it was going to be a fun production. “I knew Shakespeare was pretty much about the language, but at the beginning I didn’t really understand much of what I was saying,” recalls Jamie. “We had to take it small piece by small piece, one scene at a time,” says James. “And when it came to the season, we could tell that most of the older audience liked it and got it,” says Reis.
Along the way they learnt a new vocabulary. Not words they’ll use in everyday speech, but old- fashioned language with precise meanings. “Like ‘come hither’,” says Jamie, who previously took part in the junior production High School Musical . “My siblings came to the production and they enjoyed it, but they didn’t understand it at all. But there were still jokes they could follow and enjoy.” James says rehearsals were hilarious. “Everyone was making mistakes and it was really good fun. It was complicated because it was a different type of language to what we are used to,
but it wasn’t immensely difficult.” Would they do Shakespeare again? Yes, definitely, they say, but not just yet!
“I knew Shakespeare was pretty much about the language, but at the beginning I didn’t really understand much of what I was saying.” Jamie Barr
College Issue 36 2019
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