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Extracts for 1 player to try out

Let’s explore: Prospero’s back-story in The Tempest

  Actors often  create a ‘back story’ for their characters which says what happened to them before the play starts. In The Tempest, there is no need for the actor to work out Prospero’s back story, because Prospero tells it himself, in Act 1 Scene 2, when he tells his daughter Miranda how they came to be shipwrecked on the desert island where they are. . The following link will take you …Read More

Shakespeare play-reading activity during August 2017 & Macbeth’s Soliloquies

For six weeks or so in July / August, we tried to persuade you to try out play-reading using our online edition of Shakespeare’s plays. A couple of weeks ago, at the end of August, we ran a hasty analysis to get a feel for what activity you’d undertaken during that month. Now we’ve had a bit more time to undertake a more rigorous analysis, we’ve got a better understanding …Read More

Countdown to Playreading… T – 7: Let’s Explore the principal characters in the play

In the previous step, you  read some, or all, of the play. Now  it’s worth exploring some of the more interesting bits of the play, using some of the features we provide to make it easier to read some of the soliloquies. This will let you explore or deepen your understanding of the main characters in the play, and also get you used to how to use various features of …Read More

Let’s Explore Lady Macbeth for play-reading

We are surprised at the level of interest you’ve shown in play-reading. Our Facebook page now has more than 1,000 members (page likes & friends), and  in July, traffic to the web-site has doubled. Most of that comes from the US and UK, but interest is growing in Brazil, India, and the Philippines. . We hope some of you will try out play-reaidng of Macbeth in September, but why wait …Read More

Let’s Explore: Macbeth’s soliloquies

When we are exploring Macbeth‘s character, it is revealing to look at his soliloquies / monologues. Most of these occur in the first half of the play, though perhaps his most famous monologue occurs very close to the end of the play in Act Five Scene Five. This is in a very different style to the earlier soliloquies. Let’s start with the early solilquies. . Before we start, it’s worth …Read More

Let’s Explore Macbeth’s first scene (A1S3)

It’s a commonplace that Shakespeare’s plays don’t have many stage directions in them. Our view is that there are many, many stage directions but they are not labelled as such.  Instead, the writer buries his stage instructions in the language of the play. Cues; midline switches; rhetorical devices; short lines; rhyming couplets; switches between verse and prose; all of these incorporate stage directions into the play. . Why does the …Read More

Let’s Explore: Lady Macbeth

Act 1 Scene 5 (Lady Macbeth‘s first scene): The first scene in which a character appears, is often revealing about that character. It’s helpful for the actor and it’s helpful for the audience, if they both find out about the character when they are first introduced to them (or when they first start learning their lines, if they are the actor). In Act 1 Scene 5 of Macbeth, Lady Macbeth‘s …Read More

The innovative tools we offer to explore a Shakespeare play

There has been a lot of interest recently in how you can use our web-site for play-reading Shakespeare’s plays. There are three posts which seem to have excited people: How to get started with Shakespeare play-readings How to run a Shakespeare play-reading Professional Actors Playreading Session which records how a set of Porfessional Actors used it to explore a few scenes from different plays We’re delighted that so many of you …Read More

How to make a Video Reading

Overview: If you’ve watched and listened to some of our Video Readings, you may want to record a Video Reading yourself. And when you’ve recorded it, you can send it to Players-Shakespeare.com for us to evaluate if we’ll publish it. This is what you have to do: Select one or more scenes to record – you can find candidate scenes in our “Let’s Play” menu on Players-Shakespeare.com Record your version of the scene …Read More

Video Reading: Love’s Labour’s Lost: A3S1 ‘And I, forsooth, in love!’

I wanted to make a Video Reading of this monologue by Berowne in Love’s Labour’s Lost, because I think it’s very funny, but very difficult for the actor to make it ‘come off’. . Berowne is one of the four members of the court of Navarre who have sworn not to fall in love whilst they study for a year. Berowne has fallen in love with Rosline, and is both disgusted,  and …Read More