Comedy of Errors… a look back…

OK, so our first month ends today.  The Comedy of Errors is over.  I think we’ve made a pretty good start… I had hoped for a little more interaction from the community, but hey, that’s ok… it’s a pretty demented mission I’ve set for myself, and I don’t expect many — any? — of you to follow.

As the month was ending, though, I began thinking hard about this blog.  I’ve tried to stay as objective as possible in the composition of the daily entries (for those who know me well, you know how hard this is for me, a pretty SUBjective, heart-on-sleeve, passionate guy [read, at times pedantic and blowhard-y… yeah, not a word, I KNOW]).  And in the past few days, I’ve began to wonder if (since there doesn’t seem too many readers out there to offend) maybe I shouldn’t just, you know, loosen up, let loose, and let the ever-lovin’ bullsh!t flow.
Continue reading Comedy of Errors… a look back…

Beginnings, Part Two (individual scenes)

Yesterday, we talked a little about beginnings, specifically of the plays themselves, about how they could be either strong and loud (to grab the audience’s attention) or slow (building exposition at a more leisurely pace).

Today, let’s take a microcosmic look at this concept: what about the beginnings of scenes themselves.
Continue reading Beginnings, Part Two (individual scenes)

Podcast 05: The Comedy of Errors Wrap-Up

This week’s podcast includes the discussions of production concepts and possible casts for The Comedy of Errors.  Also, this week: DVD reviews of the BBC’s production of The Comedy of Errors and the PBS documentary The Hobart Shakespeareans.
Continue reading Podcast 05: The Comedy of Errors Wrap-Up

The Last Scene (much wackiness then reunion)

Ah, yes, Comedy‘s last scene.  429 lines to set everything aright.

It is the model of economy.  It begins with a reiteration by Angelo about the high esteem Ephesus has for its Antipholus (as he apologizes yet again to the second merchant).  AS and DS arrive, deny Angelo his payment, and are seen by the two (plus “wife,” sister, and ho) fleeing arrest by entering the Priory/Abbey.
Continue reading The Last Scene (much wackiness then reunion)

Why Rhyme? Part II: The Answers–Episode Two: The Answers’ Answer

OK, yesterday, we discussed the different rationales for using rhyme in the verse of the plays.  Some of our purposes:

  • singling out an entire body or block of content
  • singling out a couplet of content (for emphasis, particularly at the end of a speech)
  • content from outside the play itself–poems, songs, even entire plays that are performed within the context of the scene
  • portrayal of other worldly-entities

Continue reading Why Rhyme? Part II: The Answers–Episode Two: The Answers’ Answer

Shakespeare: the Monster Mash-Up Edition

OK, don’t know how many of you have heard of Seth Grahame-Smith’s Pride and Prejudice and Zombies or his projected follow-up, Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter, but now’s there’s another classic v. monster mash-up on the horizon:

Sense and Sensibility and Sea Monsters

So it’s got me to thinking:

What about a Shakespearean monster mash-up?

Which play?  What monster?

My wife Lisa’s vote is for vampires (she’s devoured the Twilight novels [though with less and less enthusiasm] as well was the Sookie Stackhouse novels by Charlaine Harris (the source for HBO’s True Blood) and the Anita Blake, Vampire Hunter books by Laurell K. Hamilton), with maybe Friar Laurence being a blood sucker himself (the potion he gives Juliet is just to incapacitate her before he turns her… and when he finds Romeo in the chamber, he is touched by their romanticism and turns them both)… it might just work.

In “all my spare time,” I might even play around with the idea… any others out there?

Podcast 04: Women of The Comedy of Errors

This week’s podcast includes the results of a request put out to Facebook fans and blog readers for podcast topic suggestions.  The result?  The first of our “Women of…” issues.

Sounds like Playboy magazine, doesn’t it?

Welcome to The Bill / Shakespeare Project podcast: The Women of The Comedy of Errors edition
Continue reading Podcast 04: Women of The Comedy of Errors

Looking for the Rational Rationale (or You can’t have your poetry until you’ve eaten your prose)

Yesterday, we asked why Shakespeare chose to rhyme over 20% of the total lines of The Comedy of Errors (over 23% of the poetic line count).

wow, that’s an awful title…

Today, why are roughly 235 lines of the play in prose?
Continue reading Looking for the Rational Rationale (or You can’t have your poetry until you’ve eaten your prose)

Bill Walthall (UCLA '85 English), a former high school English, Shakespeare, and Drama teacher, will read and blog about each of Shakespeare's plays, from The Comedy of Errors through The Tempest.

The Bill / Shakespeare Project