Thursday, July 14, 2011

Shakespeare in the Park

Good Morning. I hope you all had a good sleep.

This year, as in years past, I'll be taking a small group of students with me to see a play by William Shakespeare. We'll be going on Friday, July 22 at about 7pm, and I'll have space for about ten students. We'll be meeting some of my American students there. The first ten WTOSP students who sign up in the comments section of this blog post will get the spots in my van.

To help prepare you for the trip, here's a full-text version of A Midsummer Night's Dream. This particular site presents the play in Elizabethan English and what the editors call "modern English," which might be easier for you to understand. I'd encourage you to try the Elizabethan English first--one of the reasons that Shakespeare remains, in many readers' opinions, the greatest writer in English is the way he uses language to say many different things at the same time.

If you like, you might also look at a bookstore--editions of Shakespeare are inexpensive at Half-Price books at Carriage Place tonight. It's a good idea to familiarize yourself with the play a little before you go; the language can be a little challenging, even to my American students.

It's our hope that you'll both practice your English at the play and that you'll do some writing afterward on this blog. In fact, if you sign up to go with me, you'll be required to post to the blog about your experience. While we're at the play, both before the play starts and during intermission, I want you to ask some ordinary Americans the following questions:
What brings you to the park to see a play written four hundred years ago?
Why or how is Shakespeare relevant to the present day?

You can record your answers on video using your cameras or phones, or you can take some notes for later. In either case, you can post your findings to the blog.

Another option is for you to reflect after the play about what your answers would be to the two questions above. You can post your answers in writing here as well.

I look forward to sharing this special cultural opportunity with you on July 22nd.


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