Category Archives: education

Shakespeare Reloaded

One of the most thrilling new Shakespeare resources to appear on the scene has been created out of the English Department of the University of Sydney, a labour of love from Professor Liam Semler.

Shakespeare Reloaded is a whole new, holistic way of thinking about Shakespeare education. Stimulating, variegated and interactive, it includes reflective writing, activities, analysis, research, listings, links and pretty much everything else you can think of.

This resource will continue to expand and will be invaluable for teachers of all levels, students, and those who are simply interested in richer encounters with Shakespeare.

Shakespeare Reloaded

Red and black logo with text: Shakespeare Reloaded

Thoughts on Henry V

22 November, Canberra

Public Seminar at the ANU:

“Making Memories: Performing Research on Henry V in Australia”

Leaders in scholarship on Shakespeare in the theatre, Dr Kate Flaherty (ANU) and Dr Rob Conkie (La Trobe) are joining to speak on Australia’s engagement with Shakespeare’s Henry V in performance, as a commentary on war, on nation and on history.

“When the first ANZAC Day (25 April 1916) collided with the 300th anniversary of Shakespeare’s death (23 April 1916), a special kind of challenge was issued to the Australian commemorative calendar. To this day productions of Henry V still bear traces of the ways in which the newly federated nation met this challenge. From a newsreel of a ‘Shakespeare in the Schools’ on the steps of the ANZAC memorial in 1955, to the 1995 Bell Shakespeare production featuring ‘diggers’, to the 2014 Bell production which couched its meditation of war politics in the context of the London blitz, Australian treatments of the play map a specifically Australian politics of war remembrance.”

On campus at ANU, Tuesday 22 November, 4.15 – 5.30pm, Humanities Research Centre Conference Room.

No charge, all welcome, light refreshments provided.

Making Memories

Group of 1940s schoolchildren and teachers gathered around a book.
A scene from the 2015 Bell Shakespeare production of Henry V

Beyond 400: New Shakespeares

15 November, Melbourne

The University of Melbourne will be hosting a one-day symposium considering the way ahead, after a year of Shakespeare 400 commemorative events.

An impressive lineup of international speakers will contribute. Keynote speakers include:

Defining the BBC 2012 and 2016 Shakespeare Seasons in Festival Terms: Dr Sarah Olive, University of York

Shakespeare and the digital sphere: performance and the public in the RSC / Google+’s Midsummer Night’s Dreaming: Dr Erin Sullivan, Shakespeare Institute, University of Birmingham

Defining Shakespeare: Professor John Jowett, Shakespeare Institute, University of Birmingham

Canon, Chronology and Collaboration in Shakespeare’s Early Career: Dr Will Sharpe, Shakespeare Institute, University of Birmingham

Check out this flyer for full blogs of the key speakers: beyond400

Papers will also be given by Laurie Johnson, Mark O’Connor, Paul Kauffman, David Rowland, and your humble correspondent.

From the University of Melbourne website:

After a year-long celebration of the quartercentenary of Shakespeare’s death, it’s time to move from reflection to future directions. What will Shakespearean text and performance look like, beyond the 400 year anniversary? This symposium will draw on the expertise of its four keynote speakers from the Shakespeare Institute, University of Birmingham and the University of York to focus on questions of editing and performance.

The day runs 9am – 4pm, and is free of charge.

Full details here.

Shakespeare Day at Notre Dame

9 November, Sydney

The University of Notre Dame, Sydney is hosting a full day of presentations showcasing their engagement with this anniversary year. Two special parts of that are open to the public, and all who are interested are warmly invited to attend.

There will be a 1pm keynote address by Professor Chris Wortham on Shakespeare’s Maps, and students will be performing A Midsummer Night’s Dream in the Notre Dame Theatre at 4.30pm, which will be followed by a reception.

The campus is on the corner of Abercrombie Street and Broadway in Chippendale and is very easy to find. There is no charge, and no need to book.

You can read more about the ideas behind the day and, what went on, here.

Event details in PDF form, as listed above, also biog and picture of Prof. Wortham.
Programme of events for the day

Shakespeare 400 Perth Festival

22 October, Perth.

A full day of events at the beautiful campus of the University of Western Australia (they have peacocks).

Shakespeare Shenanigans perform stage combat scenesIn this year full of commemorations, the largest full-day celebration to take place in Australia is still to come. The Shakespeare 400 Perth Festival is free, family friendly and packed with events grand and small, from the sublime and the serious to the silly.

Man and woman in Elizabethan dress.
Expect to see all kinds of characters

Starting at midday, with seven different on-campus locations, you can encounter strolling players, listen to some songs or sonnets, or get lost in the Forest of Arden. There are games, stalls, scenes performed, an insult-flinging competition, and even the chance to involve yourself in Romeo and Juliet’s balcony scene. There are lots of activities for children – remember that most Halloween children’s games date back to the middle ages. There are far too many events to list here, so click through to their printable schedule and plan for your favourites.

Details of the full day’s schedule here.

Lots of frolics are promised for all.

http://Shakespeare400.com.au

Much Dell’Arte About Nothing

17 & 18 October, Parramatta.

Much dell’Arte About Nothing

From Matriark Theatre, for three shows only, comes this lively, clever mash-up designed for school audiences. Get all the fun of the Italian Commedia dell’Arte, plus all the fun of Shakespeare’s best known and loved bits, rolled up together and rolled about a bit.

“Utilising slapstick, masks, stage combat, dance and stock characters, watch familiar Shakespearean references be transformed and invigorated.” – Read about the show here.

Full details of the performance schedule and bookings at Parramatta Riverside Theatre here.

Plus one show at the Casula Powerhouse 21 October.

Woman and man in Commedia masks and Elizabethan ruffs.

The Shakespeare Carnival is Here

18 June, Sydney.

Sport for Jove’s initiative to offer a creative platform to Shakespeare enthusiasts in high schools is all set to show itself to the world.

This coming Saturday, the State Carnival will showcase the best of the student pieces developed through this new opportunity to creatively engage with Shakespeare’s works.

All through this term schools around the state have been holding in-school and regional competitions in a range of performance and design categories, and now the finalists are ready for showtime. The evening’s performance is taking place at the Seymour Centre, and is open to the public. You can see tomorrow’s stars in shine in work that has been equal parts challenging, creative and inspiring.

Festival director Chris Tomkinson says, “There are a some wonderful performances and delightful talent on display across all the performance categories of song composition, dance, acting and design. Students have participated from all across the city, from many regions outside of Sydney and as far afield as Armidale.
Participants in the finals come from Wollongong, the Blue Mountains, Armidale and, of course, right across Sydney.”

There is no question the desire and the enthusiasm for such an event has been simmering away just waiting for a team like Sport for Jove to give it an outlet. Congratulations to all the students who took part, and the parents and teachers who supported them, and chookas to the finalists!

Tickets are only $20, you can book them here.

Logo, bright purple with graphic of hand with heart drawn on palm.

Varieties of Shakespeare: Podcasts

Papers presented at the University of Sydney, hosted by the EMLAC (Early Modern Literature and Culture) research group, on Wednesday 27 April 2016.

Line drawing of Shakespeare. Text: University of Sydney, Shakespeare 400

In an informal afternoon, presenters gave 10-15 minute pieces covering topics that show the variety of approaches to Shakespeare studies, historic, literary, educational, dramaturgical and where all these interests meet.

Huw Griffiths: “1616 and All That”

On the other great literary artist we should be commemorating, and how his work interacted with Shakespeare’s.

Kathy French: “Happy Shakespeare”

On what some of Shakespeare’s heroines do to earn their happiness.

Ursula Potter: “Shakespeare’s Daughters”

On fathers with growing daughters, and the unique perspective on parenting that appears in Shakespeare’s plays.

Kathryn Parker: “Shakespeare in Song”

How did the many ballads that appear in Shakespeare’s plays fit in with the contemporary culture of popular song?

Penny Gay: “Shakespeare in a Tent”

On what has distinguished the most exciting and vibrant periods of Shakespeare performance in Australia.

Anna Kamaralli: “Margaret of Anjou: a New Play by Shakespeare”

On performances of the script recently crafted by Liz Schafer and Philippa Kelly designed to centre the “Tiger’s heart wrapped in a woman’s hide” in her own story.

Liam Semler and Claire Hansen: “Shakespeare Reloaded: Shakeserendipity”.

Liam and Claire’s piece differs a little from the others in that they were presenting an online resource. For this reason the podcast is best listened to in conjunction with looking at their Shakespeare Reloaded website and its Shakeserendipity game.

Playing the Shakespeare Game

From Sydney University, Professor Liam Semler’s wonderfully expansive project in Shakespeare education, which has been developing for years in association with Barker College, has just launched a new game-based collection of learning material.

Pencil sketch of skull.

It’s really worth spending some time on their Shakespeare Reloaded website, and reading up on the Shakeserendipity project. Both inspirational and practical, the project is a genuinely fresh take on ways to use Shakespeare in learning, and use the latest learning systems when working on Shakespeare.

There are three games, based around Julius Caesar, Richard III and The Tempest.