Workshop: Performing Shakespeare: Theory and Praxis
Performing Shakespeare: Theory & Praxis
Dept. of English
Assam University, Silchar
10th – 14th April 2017
As a sequel to the much appreciated workshop on Theater Appreciation: Theory and Praxis, the Department of English, Assam University, Silchar is organizing a five-day workshop on Performing Shakespeare: Theory and Praxis from 10th to 14th April 2017. The objective of the Workshop is to acquaint participants with the enduring enigma that is William Shakespeare and expose them to the technicalities of adapting and performing Shakespeare for the twenty-first century stage.
William Shakespeare’s plays have often been described as the richest, the purest, the fairest, that imagination has ever inspired in any language and the dramatic genius of Shakespeare has remained unparalleled in the canons of world literature. But is Shakespeare our contemporary? Ben Jonson believed that Shakespeare’s dramaturgy “was not of an age but for all time”. Prophetic words certainly, and the innumerable adaptations of the Bard’s plays in the last four hundred years, both for stage and screen, across languages and cultures, bear rich witness to his relevance. Shakespearean criticism reached a new level towards the end of the Nineteenth century and has continued to proliferate in diverse fields ever since. During the Twentieth and Twenty-first centuries the focus of Shakespearean Studies has shifted from the literary-text to the theatrical and performative.
In keeping with this trend, the Workshop will provide a stimulating forum for interaction on the theoretical and performative aspects of adapting Shakespeare for the modern stage. The technical sessions of the workshop would include demonstrations and lectures on various aspects of Shakespearean theatre, such as, acting methodologies, stage craft, style, history and historiography of Shakespearean adaptation so that the participants can derive a first-hand experience of learning the intricacies of the art.
The Workshop will have practical classes on how to translate a Shakespearean text into a performance thereby enhancing the participant’s skills of stage composition. A play by Shakespeare, for instance, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, shall be selected for the purpose and the participants will learn to translate a certain portion into performance keeping in mind the theoretical and performative aspects of the text. The workshop will end with performance/s of a Shakespearean play complete with music, set, props and costumes designed and innovated with available resources.