Shakespeare in a Pub

Spent Monday doing a workshop with one of my classmates' companies, Fine Chisel. They do devised work/new writing, using live music as a binding point, and have had some festival success in Edinburgh and elsewhere. This workshop was to help them work out some ideas about devising a Shakespeare piece they have been commissioned to do for a festival this Winter.

We worked into the text in various ways; initially just on a line, focusing on antithesis, and then lengthening that out into a full prologue, looking for ways to keep the energy and information flow in these prologues going. Tom suggested that the prologue often reads like a sports commentatary on what is to come. We had a lot of fun reading these prologues in this way, and found that this was a great way to really paint the picture in the text.

Finally, we worked on some scenes Tom had selected that they are looking at for the show; the idea is to situate all these scenes from various plays and with various characters in a pub, and see what comes out of the text in this new scenario. What I found really lovely was how easy it suddenly became to use the text conversationally and not just as lines thrown back and forth into space. Listening to the other groups, this was apparent in their work as well.

Generally this was a fun afternoon of light engagement with the same kind of work we have been doing in various ways. I hope I can work with Fine Chisel again in the future.