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Archives > [F2F Book Discussions] F2F36: TFG Does Shakespeare Theatre | December 6th, 2014, New Manila, Quezon City

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message 1: by Aaron Vincent (new)

Aaron Vincent (aaronvincent) | 2053 comments For our 36th F2F, we will be doing something a little bit different. Instead of discussing a specific book, we will be celebrating Shakespeare's works -- specifically his plays.

Our objective is to be familiar with the plays he wrote through his characters. We will each choose a character and read aloud that character's monologue on the F2F discussion proper.

To help you decide which character whose monologue you'll be reciting, I made a list of the notable monologues from The Bard's most famous plays:

Shakespeare's Notable Monologues

I realize that the list is male character-heavy and we have more women in our group, so I'm encouraging you to choose to apply the Rule 63 here: "For any given male character, there is a female version of that character." You can choose male character even if you're a lady. Besides, there are several women that disguised as men across the Shakespeare canon. :)

After you've chosen, read the play the character came from. In the event, everyone will do as follows:

a. Brief summary of the play you came from
b. Who you are and the context of your monologue
c. A reading of your monologue.

PM/Viber/Text/Pigeon Post me you're choices. First dibs rule applies.

Deadline of submission of character choices on the 16th of November, 2014.

Keep an eye on this thread to keep track which characters are already guesting on our event.

If you don't want to choose, you can just let me assign you one. I solemnly swear I will be completely fair. Or I can just help you decide which to pick. :)

I will post a few tips on how to read a Shakespeare play tomorrow.

Cheers! :)

message 2: by Louize (last edited Nov 06, 2014 04:43AM) (new)

Louize (thepagewalker) | 1830 comments @Aaron, Viber(ed) you! :)

message 3: by Angus (new)

Angus (angusmiranda) | 4337 comments You know mine. This is supposed to be a secret/surprise?

message 4: by Monique (new)

Monique (attymonique) | 2126 comments Viber dibs!

message 5: by Aaron Vincent (last edited Nov 24, 2014 01:27AM) (new)

Aaron Vincent (aaronvincent) | 2053 comments TFG Does Shakespeare Theater Guestlist

1. Hamlet (Hamlet)
2. Helena (All's Well That Ends Well)
3. Henry V (Henry V)
4. Iago (Othello)
5. Lady Macbeth (Macbeth)
6. Portia (The Merchant of Venice)
7. Queen Margaret (Richard III)
8. Richard II (Richard II)
9. Rosalind (As You Like It)
10. Viola (Twelfth Night)

------ Additions as of November 10, 2014

11. Beatrice (Much Ado About Nothing)
12. Benedick (Much Ado About Nothing)
13. Helena (A Midsummer Night's Dream)
14. Katherine (Taming of the Shrew)
15. Theseus (A Midsummer Night's Dream)
16. Shylock (The Merchant of Venice)
17. Mistress Page (Merry Wives of Windsor)

message 6: by Aaron Vincent (last edited Nov 09, 2014 07:12PM) (new)

Aaron Vincent (aaronvincent) | 2053 comments I know that reading a Shakespeare work could be a bit daunting but it could also be a very rewarding experience. I, by no means, is an expert and only speaking from experience but I'll share a few tips that will help you fully enjoy reading his plays.

A Few Tips on Reading Shakespeare's Plays

1. Read a summary.
Get rid of that "what happens next" distraction so you can focus on the "how it happens". Forget about the spoiler-phobia, focus on the language, observe how the characters identify themselves. You'll be able to absorb more if you're not racing towards the finish. Read whatever summary you can get your hands on. Be it the back of the book you bought, wikipedia, or sparknotes. No judgement. Just get an idea what the story is about, who dies, who betrays whom, who fall in love with whom, etc.

2. Watch a movie-adaptation.
It's a play. It was originally meant to be seen. Watching how the character themselves speak, soliloquize, verbal spar, etc., would be really helpful when you finally read the play. Observe which lines are addressed to another character and which lines are thoughts spoken aloud. Knowing how to differentiate these two is key. A play without a movie-adaptation of it is rare so you'll be able to easily find a movie of the play you've chosen.

3. Get familiarize with the common words.
Thou is you, art is are, Doth is does, etc. It wouldn't hurt to be familiar with the common words found in his plays ere (before) you read it. Check out this handy guide.

4. Don't expect consistency on the verses.
We are reading lines from different characters with massively different personalities. Don't expect them to be the same. Some characters may speak simply, some eloquent and some incredibly verbose. Some would be direct in speaking, some uses word plays and some would have penchant for flowery metaphors. Remember that for these characters, words are their weapon.

5. Keep Calm and Carry on
If you don't understand a particular passage, don't panic.
If you see at least 20-30 lines long monologues, don't panic.
If you see particular references you have no idea what is about, don't panic.
Read on. Google what you don't understand. Look for the modern text translations. The "I'm not good/smart/vocabulary-rich enough to understand this" mindset does you more harm than good.

6. Enjoy.
This is most important. If you start on it thinking it's a task, it will be a task. There are a lot of stuff that you can enjoy in reading Shakespeare's plays if you only have the right attitude.

And that's about it from me. If you have something more to add, please go ahead and comment below. :)

message 7: by Aaron Vincent (new)

Aaron Vincent (aaronvincent) | 2053 comments An infographic from Goodreads.

What Shakespeare Play Should I Read?

(view spoiler)

message 8: by Kristel (last edited Nov 07, 2014 05:28AM) (new)

Kristel (fanarchist) | 489 comments Hi, I just want to let people know that if they need someone to deep discuss their Shakespeare feels, they can hit me up on Goodreads. DM me so we can have more spoilery conversations. I had a couple of classes a loooooong time ago on both Elizabethan plays and Shakespeare specifically, so I may be able to provide some historical background and somesuch. (But don't expect, like, scholarly knowledge.)

The plays I've already read are:

A Midsummer Night's Dream
The Merchant of Venice
Twelfth Night
The Taming of the Shrew
King Lear
Henry IV, Part 1
Henry IV, Part 2
Romeo and Juliet

The plays I plan on reading before the Christmas party are:

Richard III

message 9: by Aaron Vincent (last edited Nov 12, 2014 03:11AM) (new)

Aaron Vincent (aaronvincent) | 2053 comments I have several movie adaptations of Shakespeare plays. I'm willing to burn it to dvd and give you a copy on Saturday (F2F35 & Filipino ReaderCon). Message me a list of the movies you wish me to burn for you. I will limit it to at least 2 dvd (4gb each) per person.

Please give me a list before Friday afternoon.

Here's a list of what I have:

Othello (1995)
Director: Oliver Park
Notable Actors: Kenneth Branagh, Laurence Fishburne

Twelfth Night: Or What You Will (1996)
D: Trevor Nunn
NA: Helena Bonham Carter, Ben Kingsley, etc.

Romeo + Juliet (1996)
D: Baz Luhrmann
NA: Leonardo diCaprio, Claire Danes, etc.

A Midsummer Night's Dream (1999)
D: Michael Hoffman
NA: Christian Bale, Michelle Pfeiffer, Stanley Tucci, etc.

Titus (1999)
D: Julie Taymor
NA: Anthony Hopkins, Jessica Lange, Alan Cumming, etc.

The Merchant of Venice (2004)
D: Michael Radford
NA: Al Pacino, Jeremy Irons

Coriolanus (2011)
D: Ralph Fiennes
NA: Ralph Fiennes, Jessica Chastian, Gerard Butler, etc.

The Tempest (2011)
D: Julie Taymor
NA: Helen Mirren, Ben Whishaw, etc.

King Lear (2008)
D: Trevor Nunn
NA: Ian McKellen, Sylvester McCoy

Macbeth (2010)
D: Rupert Goold
NA: Patrick Stewart, Kate Fleetwood

Richard II (2012)
D: Rupert Goold
NA: Ben Whishaw, Patrick Stewart, etc.

Henry IV Part 1 (2012)
D: Richard Eyre
NA: Jeremy Irons, Tom Hiddleston, Julie Walters, etc.

Henry IV Part 2 (2012)
D: Richard Eyre
NA: Jeremy Irons, Tom Hiddleston, Julie Walters, etc.

Henry V (2012)
D: The Sharrock
NA: Tom Hiddleston, Julie Walters

Much Ado About Nothing (2012)
D: Joss Whedon
NA: Nathan Fillon, Clark Gregg, Amy Acker, etc.

Macbeth (2015)
D: Justin Kurzel
NA: Michael Fassbender, Marion Cotillard
(view spoiler)

message 10: by Bennard (new)

Bennard | 730 comments This is the best summary on Macbeth that I have ever seen on the internet for those who are going to do a monologue from the play:

message 11: by Angus (new)

Angus (angusmiranda) | 4337 comments Hi, I found audiobook versions of Shakespeare's plays. Just search for "Complete Arkangel Shakespeare" in your favorite torrent site. I think listening to audiobook while reading the text is as helpful as watching the film adaptations before reading the text. (In my case, it also showed me how differently the characters were portrayed.)

message 12: by Aaron Vincent (last edited Nov 27, 2014 06:59PM) (new)

Aaron Vincent (aaronvincent) | 2053 comments Hello, friends!

I need you to tell me two short anecdotes that falls under two categories:

1. SHAME - An embarrassing anecdote you're willing to share. It doesn't have to be THAT embarrassing. It could be just a story you're not particularly fond of telling.

2. COOL - An anecdote you feel proud of. It could be a victorious moment, a unique story, etc.

Each anecdote should be under 120 words. (About the length of this message.) It would be best if these two anecdotes are not yet known to any TFG member.

Private message me your anecdotes on or before December 3rd, 2014. :)

message 13: by Louize (new)

Louize (thepagewalker) | 1830 comments Nice group banner, guys! :)

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