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 Shakespeare 101: Class #1, [open to registered students]
bearOffline87 POSTS
we'll be looking for sunlight, we know that we're headstrong, and our heart's gone, and the timing's never right
thespian enthusiast
you get lighter the more it gets dark cause you're a sky full of stars
alice always liked being in a class full of smart people who knew their stuff.

but she also liked having a chance to show off her knowledge.

as soon as ms. lawson asked for a volunteer to read the sentence aloud, alice immediately sat straight as rod and shot her hand into the air, waving desperately and waiting to be called on. this, however, was a mistake, when without acknowledgement from their teacher, quinn began to answer anyway.

disappointed, the creative lowered her hand, but just a small bit. when quinn finished his line, alice just had to chime in again. “oh! actually, in my opinion, I think it means something slightly different.” she answered, looking at ms. lawson for approval, “he says that music is the food of love, which sounds like music is what fuels his feelings of love. and – orsino, throughout the play, is characterized with the strength of his feelings and even love of love. it sounds like he doesn’t want to quell his feelings, but make them stronger with music.”

sailOffline4 POSTS
A young girl with eyes like the desert. It all seems like yesterday, not far away.
thirty seven
theatre teacher
so we’ll live, and pray, and sing, and tell old tales, and laugh at gilded butterflies, we’ll wear out in a walled prison packs and sects of great ones that ebb and flow by the moon.
Diana very much appreciated Quinn’s initiative. She was not fond of the traditional raise-hand-to-speak methods that other teachers employed as she found it built soldiers, not thinkers. She very much preferred those who were not afraid to stand up and show that they wanted to be in the classroom and that they were ready to try— And to fail. Wasn’t that one of the points of learning theatre? To learn how to fail and to learn that is isn’t a negative in the slightest, but a moment to invoke creativity. She mentally noted this courage in Quinn.

Not only did Quinn correctly recite and feed back an answer, the elite also introduced iambic pentameter to the rest of the class. Ms. Lawson had absolutely no qualms with students teaching other students and taking over. Leadership in students was admirable. Besides a small “absolutely correct” regarding the iambic pentameter comment, Diana kept her mouth shut, giving Quinn and Alice a moment to discuss the meaning of the line. In that very moment, pride overwhelmed her for a moment as her students were already taking off and discussing things with one another.

Once they had finished, she would remove her hands from her hips, giving them both a very impressed nod. “Either of those answers would have gotten you both a 90% grade on a paper. That’s the glory of Shakespeare, it’s really up to interpretation, and that’s what makes each actor unique; Different interpretations.” She would turn to Alice specifically, giving her a bit of a smirk as thanks for her initiative as well in discussion.

“If, at any point, you guys want to take over from me and discuss material, scripts, anything, I encourage speculation and discussion. I won’t interrupt it unless I need to move on with the course load for the day—

But, yes. You’re right, Quinn. This is an example of iambic pentameter. Iambic pentameter, for those of you who are new to it, is like a heartbeat that emphasizes every other syllable in a line.”

She turned to the blackboard again, chalk in hand. “When actors mark it on their page, they typically do so like this.”


“Now,” Diana started, “If you are paying attention, you’ll know that iambic pentameter tells you, often, what words are most important. But, if you are a perceptive student, you’ll realize here that Shakespeare is quite literally telling you how to read his works.. You see, Shakespearean plays were not meant to be read, but to be spoken.”

Placing the chalk against the metal side of the board, Diana would turn back to the class. Once facing them, she would actually perform the line for them, as an example of what she expected for the future. “If music, she began, emphasizing the use of “muse” in the word, as if she was ripe with it; “Be the food of love be was spoken as if she wasn't sure whether or not to believe it to be, but so desperately hoped it was, food was said as if the word itself could fill her up while girlish excitement lingered on the word love, almost sing-songy— Every letter of it, delicious; “Play on.” As if begging the musician to continue, Diana worked to convey the meaning behind each emphasized word.

The words she spoke weren’t purposefully emphasized. In fact, it sounded like she was just passionately speaking.

“Now,” she dusted herself off, “It’s more than alright to be a little “shmackty” with Shakespeare’s works. These days, it’s almost like a foreign language, so it’s vital to remember the emotion and to convey that. It’s alright not to be subtle in Shakespeare.

So, not only does he tell you what words he finds important, he also tells you their social staus, if they are emotionally charged, and even if there is an unmarked pause. Most Shakespearean monologues have 10 beats per line. That is the norm. If it goes over 10, they are very emotionally charged. If it is under, they are either cut off or the character takes a pause somewhere. Shakespeare also uses iambic pentameter primarily for royals or for anyone addressing royals. For commoners it’s usually written more loosely, like modern day scripts.”

She exhaled, having poured out all that information so quickly.

“There’s more regarding semicolons, periods, commas, and all that jazz… But that is for a later class. For now,” Diana placed the papers on the floor, spreading them out messily.

“I’d like everyone to select one monologue from the pile here and read out a few lines so we can all get a feel of iambic pentameter, and to hear it the way Shakespeare meant for it to be heard. In doing so, please note anything of interest, any special meanings, or any extra beats. If there are none, just presenting it is perfectly good enough. Oh— And remember, a sentence does not end at the end of a line. It ends at the period and words should be spoken fluidly between lines, like you were speaking to someone naturally.”

Class #1
ainsley tyson, alice moreau, glenda coco-lee, Hayami Endo, justin kim, OLIVIA Boutroux, princess reyes-taylor, quinn harlow
This course is available only for registered students. Registration is open at all times, so if you have not yet registered & want to participate, go do so now by clicking << here >>.

As many answers as possible needed!. Choose ONE monologue and read out 1 - 5 lines of it (or a sentence).

If you need help finding monologues, here are some << monologues for men >> and some << monologues for women.>> No heavy research needed, just choose one and have your character present 1 - 5 lines!

bearOffline87 POSTS
we'll be looking for sunlight, we know that we're headstrong, and our heart's gone, and the timing's never right
thespian enthusiast
you get lighter the more it gets dark cause you're a sky full of stars
alice absolutely ate up the praise from ms. lawson, beaming at her teacher’s comment that their interpretations were both valid. while some may see her as a bit of a teacher’s pet, alice saw no shame in that label. nothing wrong with doing your best in class, right?

she scooted her feet back and hugged her legs, eyes gazing upwards at diana’s display of her own dramatic talents. alice’s eyes went wide as she absorbed her teacher’s interpretation – it was incredible how much thoughts, emotions, wants and desires and dreams that she could convey in just one line. when she finished, alice almost got the urge to clap, but held back.

alice kind of wished that she had a notebook and pen to take all of this down, but sitting on the ground as they were, she did her best to understand and commit the knowledge to memory. when diana moved onto the next activity, alice immediately got to her knees and crawled forward, inspecting the scripts on the floor before the oncoming rush.

she saw a familiar name the top – alice grabbed the script from the taming of the shrew, one of kate’s monologues. the students took a few minutes to read and digest, but soon alice was ready with hers, which was one of the shorter ones in the pile. when it looked like everyone was more or less done and ready to present – alice immediately shot to her feet, smiling excitedly at the room.

“oh! i can do mine, first – it’s one of kate’s monologues, from taming of the shrew. basically, there’s this guy, petruchio, and it’s sort of like a romcom – he marries kate, the shrew of the play, which refers to a disobedient or ill-tempered woman.”

without further ado, alice began to read. the natural rhythm of the shakespearan play made her voice sound almost melodic, but alice made sure to keep her vocal pauses and tone accurate to the original work. occasionally, she would gesture with her hands or contort her face in anger and shame. when she finished, there was a short pause before she looked up from the page.

“so I think this is the part in the play where they’re on their wedding day, and kate’s already not happy about marrying petruchio when he seemingly stands her up. so she’s upset, angry, and ashamed – not a great start to any marriage, nevermind the rest of the play!”

then she broke into a relieved grin, still feeling the high of performing, before settling down and allowing someone else to speak.

CyberLanceOffline6 POSTS

For the first few moments of the class Olivia fell silent and listened attentively to her peers talk. She didn't want to get an answer wrong and being as shy as she was, she preferred to stay silent during these times. She nodded when the topic of iambic pentameter was introduced to the class. She knew she would have to remember this for later.

When all was said and done the class moved onto lines and monologues. When the teacher performed the line the way she did, Olivia widened her eyes. Just a single line was all it took to leave her wanting to see more from the other peers. She got her wish when it was time to pick a monologue.

She took a deep breath in, knowing she would have to perform this in front of the class. She looked through the pile and eventually found one that seemed familiar to her. It was one of Juliet's from Romeo and Juliet. Now, Olivia didn't know that much about theater in the first place but she did know Romeo and Juliet. This was the one play she saw while she lived in London.

Alice went up with her monologue and performed it first. The talent that was displayed put some pressure on Olivia since she wanted the teacher and peers to like her so after Alice sat back down she would look around before taking a deep breath and standing up.

As she stood there she could feel every eye looking at her and it made her even more nervous. She swallowed and nodded gently, closing her eyes and opening them. "I... uh... I don't know much about acting or Shakespeare. When I was younger... I- I saw a performance of Romeo and... and Juliet. She stuttered as she started "Here we go..." she muttered to herself before taking another deep breath and beginning.

She spoke timidly as she began to read the Juliet's final monologue right before her death. Since she was a musician, she knew which words needed to be emphasized and she knew about beats, taking them as breaths.

"Farewell! God knows when we shall meet again" she started out as strong as she possibly could, still a little timid. She softened her voice a little bit as she spoke the next few lines "I have a faint cold fear thrills through my veins" emphasizing the words faint, cold, and fear, along with veins. She spoke with the same intensity as she finished "That almost freezes up the heat of life:" She spoke longingly as she froze there, copying the pause that her previous peer did.

Olivia blinked and looked up from the page "I- uhm... In this monolouge... I think what.. what is so significant about it is that." She paused to think before nodding "She thinks that her lover has died and she thinks that she will never find love again. Juliet loves him a lot and I think that is powerful to me..." she muttered before bowing again and sitting back down.

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