Please provide your email to subscribe to the blog posts:
Are you interested in previous poll results? Please visit the links below to view them.
October 20, 2017 12:00 AM Romeo and Juliet
October 30, 2015 12:00 AM And Now for the Romantic Quotes from Henry V...
October 25, 2015 12:00 AM To Mark the 600th Anniversary Of The Battle of Agincourt...
October 19, 2015 12:00 AM More Great Quotes From Henry V
October 14, 2015 12:00 AM Favorite Quotes From Henry V
October 8, 2015 12:00 AM Henry V
July 30, 2015 12:00 AM Last Of the Quotes From A Midsummer Night;s Dream.
July 23, 2015 12:00 AM Even More Great Quotes From A Midsummer Night's Dream
July 16, 2015 12:00 AM More Great Quotes From A Midsummer Night's Dream
July 9, 2015 12:00 AM Great quotes from A Midsummer Nights Dream
July 1, 2015 12:00 AM A Midsummer Night's Dream
May 6, 2015 12:00 AM The Two Noble Kinsmen
April 2, 2015 12:00 AM A Few More Quotes From Hamlet
March 4, 2015 12:00 AM Favorite Quotes From Hamlet
February 21, 2015 12:00 AM A Twist on Hamlet-“Haider” A Movie Review
February 12, 2015 12:00 AM Hamlet-The Play
August 22, 2014 12:00 AM More Quotes from King John
August 14, 2014 12:00 AM King John
March 12, 2013 12:00 AM The Globe Theatre
September 19, 2012 12:00 AM Great Quotes from a Fun Play!
September 6, 2012 12:00 AM September’s Play of the Month: Love’s Labour’s Lost
August 24, 2012 12:00 AM A Short History Lesson and a Few More Great Quotes!
August 7, 2012 12:00 AM A Few Great Quotes
August 1, 2012 12:00 AM Augusts' Play of the Month: The Merry Wives of Windsor
July 25, 2012 12:00 AM Are you in need of a great Insult?
June 10, 2012 12:00 AM More great quotes from Measure for Measure:
May 25, 2012 12:00 AM Great Quotes from the play Measure for Measure
May 14, 2012 12:00 AM Measure for Measure
May 4, 2012 12:00 AM Trivia Answer from February
April 22, 2012 12:00 AM Elizabethan Dinner Party
March 28, 2012 12:00 AM A Few More Great Quotes Before the Month Ends
March 21, 2012 12:00 AM A Few More Great Quotes!
March 13, 2012 12:00 AM Seven Stages of Life
February 28, 2012 12:00 AM As You Like It
February 14, 2012 12:00 AM New quote and Trivia Question
February 6, 2012 12:00 AM Favorite Quotes and Trivia Question #2
February 1, 2012 12:00 AM February's Play of the Month
January 27, 2012 12:00 AM Poll Results
January 17, 2012 12:00 AM Still More Richard III
December 16, 2011 12:00 AM #2
December 8, 2011 12:00 AM #1
December 2, 2011 12:00 AM Richard III
November 19, 2011 12:00 AM What is your favorite part of the play???
November 14, 2011 12:00 AM This Weeks Trivia Question!
November 10, 2011 12:00 AM New Quote from
November 7, 2011 12:00 AM Question #2
November 4, 2011 12:00 AM A Great Quote from The Taming of the Shrew!
November 1, 2011 12:00 AM New Contest!
October 31, 2011 12:00 AM The Winner Is...
October 22, 2011 12:00 AM Anonymous-My Review
October 26, 2011 12:00 AM Great Shakespeare Quotes!
October 19, 2011 12:00 AM Contest and RichardIII
October 11, 2011 12:00 AM The Tempest-The Movie
October 7, 2011 12:00 AM Free Contest Giveaway to Kick Off Our New Blog!!!
October 5, 2011 12:00 AM The Plays the Thing!
The Plays the Thing! October 5, 2011 12:00 AM | Tagged as adaptations, education, movies
This is my PLEA to all English teachers out there! I was raised on Shakespeare. However, it wasn’t until I saw the movie version of Taming of the Shrew with Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton that it hit me as something amazing! That was also when I decided that my first daughter would be named Katherine (Kathryn). I had loved that name from that moment on! But getting back to Shakespeare, I have a MAJOR complaint about how Shakespeare is taught in schools. Let me explain.
First complaint: Most kids are introduced to Shakespeare, at least in the USA, when they read Romeo and Juliet. This is where my first complaint starts. Couldn’t you start with a play that is more fun? I mean, R&J is so depressing!!! Much Ado About Nothing, or Taming...is a much better choice for an introduction. I know many think that they are demeaning to women, but if the history of the times are taught in conjunction with the reading then the students will see how far society has progressed since the 1600’s.
Second Complaint: These plays were written to be seen, NOT to be read. If only the students could see the plays either before, during or after reading it then it would bring Shakespeare’s words to life. I know many Shakespeare companies will go and do workshops at schools and even that would help the students in their classes.
If you don’t have a Shakespeare company that does this, teachers, I am begging you, at least get a hold of a movie version of the plays and let them watch it!!! Even though I don’t enjoy Romeo and Juliet, (I need happy endings!), I think the best movie version made is the 1996 version directed by Baz Luhrmann with Leonardo DiCaprio and Claire Danes. It was really imaginative but it does depict some drug use, which wasn’t necessary.There are also many variations of the play that have been adapted to movies from, West Side Story to the latest, Gnomeo and Juliet (I LOVED this one because they changed the ending!). There is even a great Bollywood version of R&J starring Amir Khan, entitled Qayamat Se Qayamat Tak that I really enjoyed but, I LOVE Bollywood, so don't even get me started down that road...
Julius Caesar is also one that is studied in schools. There is an amazing movie of this that was made in 1953 with Marlin Brando as Mark Antony. He is fantastic and it has a wonderful cast.
Hamlet is one of the plays studied in schools and Mel Gibson’s version is one of the best, just explain he made it when he was still in control of his mind… My favorite is Kenneth Branagh’s version since it does the entire play (4 hours long), but…WARNING…try to get an edited copy. There is a bit too much skin in the original. Branagh’s version of Henry V is the best ever made!!!! I never get tired of watching it! I really don’t like any of the versions of Shakespeare’s plays with Laurence Olivier. I know that is almost blasphemous, but it is a personal thing I guess. I do love him in Pride and Prejudice, but that is Jane Austen.
The last play that most schools may study is A Midsummer Night’s Dream. This one really doesn’t have a great movies version out yet. There is one I like but I got an edited copy of it because there is too much skin in it and I hate that. It wasn’t necessary. It has Kevin Kline, Christian Bale and Michelle Pfeiffer in it. My dad loves the very old version with Mickey Rooney in it but I haven’t seen it so you may judge for yourself. Anyway, every child has to experience some Shakespeare while in school, so I am asking parents, since the schools don’t seem to be doing it, help your child appreciate the plays of Shakespeare by supplementing the reading of it with a LIVE performance or a movie version. Even if you don’t like Shakespeare, help your child and go with them and I would be willing to predict that you may change your ideas concerning the plays.
Wednesday, October 5, 2011 1:15 PM
This is great. I need to show my daughter's teacher.