News

#BillAlexander on his #new #90minute, #6actor #adaptation in #moderndress of #TheMerchantofVenice - at The Playground Theatre, Latimer Road London W10 in September

This will be our first production. Eleanor Bull will design the show www.eleanorbull.co.uk www.theplaygroundtheatre.london

Mary Chater 0 40

One can get obsessed with a particular work of art and I confess that obsession is the only way to describe my relationship to The Merchant of Venice. I have directed it twice professionally (the RSC and Birmingham Rep), twice at drama schools (LAMDA and Bristol Old Vic Theatre School) and taught and lectured on it often. When working on select scenes with students at the London Drama Studio (Ealing) it began to occur to me that there was an inner play about a small network of relationships that was the core of the bigger play that wrestles with huge themes of Justice and Mercy, Marriage and Money, Race and Class, and it is this inner core, essentially about the tortured nature of Love, that my production for Shakespeare in Italy will focus on.


Antonio loves Bassanio in a tortured way because he struggles to understand the true nature of his feelings and has no idea either how to express them or whether they will ever be reciprocated. Bassanio loves Portia but is tortured by how real that is when weighed against his desperate need of her money to repay his debts to a man he also loves, Antonio! Portia loves Bassanio but is tortured by the terms of her dead father's bizarre will that dictates her marital future turns on the outcome of a crazy-seeming lottery. The conversation of the lovers before Bassanio makes his choice turns around the metaphor of them both being on the rack, the Elizabethan torturers instrument of choice. Shylocks torture, apart from his foul treatment by the Christians of Venice, is the death of his adored wife Leah and the duplicity of his daughter. My version of the play, which I have called A Merchant of Venice, excludes much that is well known, to focus on just six key characters whose entangled loves, desires and fortunes hinge on better understanding of themselves and their relation to each other in the blackly comic world of a modern Venice, the sublime and terrible Serenissima.
Bill Alexander January 2020 

#theplaygroundtheatrelondon #newadaptation #moderndress #90minutes #6actors #eleanorbull #designer #billalexander #smallscale #innovative #newversion #youngactors #portia #shylock #bassanio #antonio #gratiano #repubblicadivenezia #venice #Elizabethanrack #rackinstrumentoftorture #laSerenissima #teatrogoldoni #themerchantofvenice

Snacking on Shakespeare - 5 sessions starting #January21st in #BrightonandHove for all those #over50's with a taste for Shakespeare and having the words in your mouth

please see below for details

Mary Chater 0 69

This is a new group this year at LifeLines
Happy New Year everyone! We hope you had a lovely Christmas if you were celebrating and bring on 2020. We've got some great new groups for you to try this year.

If Snacking on Shakespeare takes your fancy please get in touch by calling us on 01273 688 117 or emailing us at lifelines@volunteeringmatters.org.uk

#Socialexclusion #Loneliness #Listening #Wellbeing #theatre #Shakespearelovers #Togetherness #Sharing #Fun #Chatting #acting #designing #costumes #backdrop #shakespearecurious #shakespeareinterested #shakespearefriend #friendship #laughing #smiling #emotions #storytelling #empathy #confidence #snacking 

#6th #internationalsummerschool2020 #Caglitheatre #PUMarche June 26 - July 4 #AMidsummerNightsDream with #EmmaLuciaHands #AsYouLikeIt with #DameJanetSuzman

These two plays will be workshopped in the beautiful Cagli theatre and rehearsal room - A Midsummer Night's Dream on June 27, 28, 29 and As You Like It on July 1, 2, 3 - pdf below. ALL WELCOME!

Mary Chater 0 75

Please click here for pdf

We will work with the tutors reading round in the group then putting scenes on their feet as we establish the world of the play. Those that prefer can sit and contribute from their seats but the course is primarily designed to show how the play comes to life from an actors point of view. Hours spent workshopping are usually 10.00 - 13.00 then 14.00 to 17.00.

All those over 18 who speak English well are more than welcome to join us.

#actorspov #summerschool2020 #shakespearescenes #shakespearesunday #shakespeareactors #shakespearedirectors #actors #directors #studentactors #studentdirectors #PUMarche #AdriaticcoastofItaly #Cagli #nineteenthcenturytheatre #DameJanetSuzman #RSC #Globe #shakespearestudies #EmmaLuciaHands #DramaStudioLondon #bursary  #Italysummerschool #universitydramasocieties #dramasocieties #dramasoc #Unidramadepartments #accrediteddramaschools #amateuractors #Shakespearetheatre #Shakespearelovers #Shakespearecurious #Shakespeareinterest #Shakespeare2020 #Shakespearesummerschool #LeMarche #Marche

#HMPStyal #Wilmslow, #Cheshire #Christmasshow for #FamilyDay on #December19th - 13 women performed in front of approx 150 family members

outstanding costumes made by professional seamstress prisoner from materials etc she found in the prison and stunning props made by the women - beautiful flowers as a thank you from women working in Horticulture section of prison

Mary Chater 0 105

from  officers in reducing re offending -


I think the women who have been involved have benefitted in many ways inclusion, team building, self-confidence, resilience, we could go on and on. I also agree that there is an appetite for this type of intervention and hopefully we will see you again with a bigger spectacular.

I’ve noticed this morning a renewed confidence and a buzz among the women who took part. They have all been to see me at different times throughout the morning, all wanting to talk about the show and seek affirmation that they nailed it.

I’ve also been stopped a couple of times by women who attended family day asking how they get involved in such things in the future!!

Ana is absolutely delighted and has talked non-stop about it. She told me that a number of children had wanted to wear or play with the props. A little boy had left wearing the robot costume absolutely thrilled!!

HAPPY CHRISTMAS EVERYONE - what better way to celebrate the festive season than with singing, dancing and making theatre!

#TwelfthNight at #VenusCentre, #Bootle, #Liverpool yesterday

25th anniversary celebration of well loved Women and Children's Support Centre in Liverpool #ACE funded project

Mary Chater 0 100
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