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Actors too reverent with Shakespeare, says Mark Rylance

“To take a song like Honky Tonk Woman and study it for its literature is fair enough, but if you are going to revere it as literature you are doing a disservice to Mick Jagger and Keith Richards who would like it to be revered as a great rock’n’roll song. “That is what I have always felt about Shakespeare. By all means revere him and love him, but revere him…

Why Is Othello Black?

To us today, the word “black” carries with it a specific cluster of associations informed by history, culture, stereotypes, and literature. Othello may have started in conversation with Shakespeare’s definition of blackness, but today, he speaks with ours. A much more interesting question, really, is: Why is Othello black? Why did Shakespeare write a domestic tragedy about jealousy, and make the husband a Moor? Is Othello’s race a canard, or…


“Oliver Twist” is a story of redemption for PICT Classic Theatre.

Carolyn started rehearsals for PICT Classic Theatre’s Oliver Twist this week. She’s playing a member of Fagin’s gang. Last year in Great Expectations, she split a role; this year there is no double-casting, so she’s in every performance. I’ll be doing a lot of driving. This is not the musical Oliver; it’s the director’s original adaptation. Oliver Twist, a young orphan boy, becomes lost in the underbelly of old Victorian…


Surprise: Humanities Degrees Provide Great Return On Investment

The conventional wisdom is that humanities majors are wasting all that tuition money and dooming themselves to lives of underemployment. The conventional wisdom is wrong. Humanities degrees are actually worth well more than the cost of college. […] The present value of the extra earnings that graduates in humanities majors can expect over their lifetime is $302,400 for drama majors, $444,700 for English majors, $537,800 for history majors, and $658,900…

Seton Hill University's A Midsummer Night's Dream

Seton Hill takes on Shakespeare’s ‘Dream’

Students in my Shakespeare class will be attending this play. Student actors at Seton Hill University are off on a journey through one of William Shakespeare’s most popular romantic comedies, “A Midsummer Night’s Dream.” Not even the writing style of the Bard — sometimes difficult to master for those new to the playwright’s poetic verse — is getting in the way of their enthusiasm for the classic piece of Elizabethan…

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Battle of Agincourt — 600 Year Anniversary of Henry V’s “St. Crispin’s Day Speech”

Sure, Marty McFly Day is interesting and all that, but Oct 25, 2015 marks the 600 year anniversary of the Battle of Agincourt, the occasion for Henry V’s famous St. Crispin’s Day Speech, which, as Shakespeare rendered it around 1599, ends thus: This story shall the good man teach his son; And Crispin Crispian shall ne’er go by, From this day to the ending of the world, But we in it…