Rehearsing Shakespeare: Backstory

“The delicate brush strokes – which in rehearsal are pure gold dust”

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The second in a series of blogs from our Associate Director Bill Alexander in association with the six actor version of ‘The Merchant of Venice’ we are planning. It is an adapted version of the play by Bill called ‘A Merchant of Venice’. #actors #actorslife #performingarts #rehearsalprocess #ShareYourShakespeare @RSC


Wondrous comments from audience members after #BillAlexander's #Masterclass on his new adaptation called 'A Merchant of Venice', March 2nd at #ThePlaygroundTheatre

The #power of #Shakespeare in the hands of a #Master of his #craft - #video of Masterclass coming soon with actors #CarrieOliver #OliviaGosling #LachlanForlong #ConnorSheridan

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I adored it. Bill was enthralling and his wisdom and approach to Shakespeare has already left an indelible mark! Or should I say: a palpable hit.
How heartening that Bill stressed the language and how it unlocks character, revealing so many possibilities to explore. I found it particularly helpful since I’m about to embark on my own production ‘Antony and Cleopatra’ at #QuestorsTheatre #Ealing. The masterclass simply made me so joyous and ready to engage with my cast… a wondrous balm.
I’d very much like to become a Friend. Thank you again for organising this event and inspiring so many of us.
Best wishes
Mike Hadjipateras

What a fantastic event! It was inspirational and so enjoyable, I could have listened for hours and hours. How marvellous that you were directed by him. I saw that it was being videoed will it be put on YouTube? - Lynn Strugnell

The master class was superb - Bill was incredible and the actors were very responsive - Susan Brice

Bill's Masterclass was a tour de force! He is such an amazing director and can really dissect Shakespeare in a way that makes me really appreciate it as both an actor and a Literature student. Yes - he may even be Shakespeare re-incarnated?!  Faisal Mohiuddin

#InternationalWomensDay with in #Woking on Wednesday March 11th 2020 - The Mayor of Woking's charity 2019 / 2020

Heart warming appreciation for Professor Charlotte Scott and actress Mary Chater who worked with some of the women on performance projects in 2019 for International Women's Day and Art Awards.

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It was reasonably busy in the circumstances, and as always a really warm feel, but no performances this year. The woman had made a tree with positive messages on.
Hannah Philpott - Administrator

#Rare #opportunity for #Masterclass with #RSC Honorary Associate Artist Bill Alexander - Monday March 2nd at #ThePlaygroundTheatre, London W10 6RQ

Theatre director Bill Alexander (RSC Honorary Associate Artist) will lead a two hour Masterclass on ‘A Merchant of Venice’ - his #new #adaptation. Followed by 30 mins of questions from the audience. Tickets: £22 & £15 concessions -

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Bill began his career at the Bristol Old Vic and joined the RSC in 1977 where he was Resident and then Associate Director until 1992. He was Artistic Director of the #BirminghamRep between 1992 and 2001. Having directed ‘The Merchant of Venice’ four times (RSC, Birmingham Rep, #LAMDA and #BristolOldVicTheatreSchool) it has become, by his own admission, an obsession with him.
Acting students from #DramaStudioLondon will assist Bill in the masterclass, which will focus on themes within the play. We welcome anyone to the Masterclass who has either a love of and interest in Shakespeare or who is simply curious to know more and see a master of his profession at work!

We can also announce that Bill's adaptation, a 90-minute, modern dress version, ‘A Merchant of Venice’, will be performed at the Playground Theatre in September. This is a new production by Shakespeare in Italy (incorporating Sharing Shakespeare)

General admission - £22

Concession - ( #student, #unemployed, #'over60's #under26 ) - £15

Teachers and lecturers go free when bringing a group of 10 or more.

Please contact the Box Office via to book        

For more information please contact Mary Chater or Collette Parker at  -  poster image by Chris Duggan