Budding Bards 09.07.12

9MCH travelled to Stratford-upon-Avon to discover more about the greatest playwright of all time, William Shakespeare. Our first activity, at the Shakespeare Centre, was an interesting discussion on “Why is Shakespeare famous?” in which we looked into the history of Shakespeare’s famous theatre, and discussed how his works have been performed over the years. After the talk, we toured the interactive Shakespeare’s Birthplace Museum, and had the opportunity to walk round his own house. We then watched an entertaining performance in the court yard by three actors, of extracts from various plays.

Finally, we visited the Royal Shakespeare Theatre for a production of “Julius Caesar”, performed by an all-African cast and set in modern day East Africa. Through the words of Shakespeare, the actors produced an exciting and thought-provoking interpretation that reflected the modern day issues of unrest and regime changes in African nations. Highlights included Mark Antony’s famous “Friends, Romans, countrymen, lend me your ears” speech, and its effect on the crowd of thirty on stage, transforming them from triumphant supporters of Brutus to hysterical, rioting avengers of Caesar. After a short break to enjoy one of the few days of sunshine this year and eat ice-creams (haggled to a knockdown price at an ice-cream stall moored at the river bank), we returned home. Thanks to Mr Fraczek and Mr Pollock for organising the trip.