"All the world's a stage" - Shakespeare Workshop für die Englisch LKs Q2

Mrs Althof's, Mrs Mandt's and Mr Rahn's advanced courses English Q2 had the unique opportunity to take part in a Shakespeare acting workshop with Diana Jackson on 6th and 7th November 2017. The three-hour workshop was a perfect introduction to the topics dealt with in class as our courses are currently reading and analysing Shakespeare's play.

The workshop was a mixture of playing theatre, working as a group and learning about Shakespearean plays, especially about Macbeth. We started the workshop with warm-up exercises which are typical for actors. Diana explained these exercises as methods to get a feeling of working together as a theatre ensemble and to warm up the body as well as the mind.

After these exercises, she told us quite a lot about theatre and acting during the Shakespearean Era while focussing on Macbeth. Due to the fact that we had started to read the drama but did not have the time to work on it before the workshop her explanations made the plot as well as the characters easier to understand.

Expressing emotions in a freeze frame

Before a break, we collected different emotions which are dealt with in Macbeth. Then we were divided into three groups, and the first student of every group had to pick one emotion and express it in a freeze frame. The other members of the group were asked to join the freeze frame one after the other and had to add aspects to the emotions.

After a short break we worked on the relationship between the main character Macbeth and his friend Banquo. In pairs we had to act freeze frames which expressed the relationship between these characters. We talked a lot about their attitude towards each other and how it develops during the play.

Learning how to improve our acting skills

Shakespeare Workshop

Then we got a small excerpt of the play and had to practice acting this little scene in groups of five. Diana went to every group and gave us ideas on how to improve our acting skills and how to express the language through our body. In the end every group performed their results and it was really interesting to see which different ideas every group came up with.

All in all, the Shakespeare workshop was a good method to get to know the play better. It was a good start to begin with Shakespeare because the approach was different and everything was more active than in normal lessons. We got to know more about the characters in Macbeth and their relationship. It was an impressive workshop which made the first steps into Shakespeare´s work easier.

Wir danken Diana Jackson für diese tolle Erfahrung und dem Schulverein für die Unterstützung bei der Finanzierung!

Text: Lorena Soßna & Amelie Uhlich, Fotos: Frau Mandt