Work­shops tackle Shakespeare’s lan­guage

Auckland City Harbour News - - NEWS -

Ac­tors plan­ning to au­di­tion for the Sum­mer Shakespeare at Auck­land Univer­sity can get a help­ing hand from ac­claimed New Zealand ac­tress Lisa Har­row.

Ms Har­row will be at the univer­sity this weekend to host a two-day workshop on au­di­tion­ing Shakespeare’s lan­guage.

The workshop is in­tended in par­tic­u­lar to sup­port ac­tors plan­ning to au­di­tion for Per­i­cles, Prince of Tyre, di­rected by Ge­off Allen, to be

in March per­formed year.

Ms Har­row di­rected the 2013 Sum­mer Shakespeare on King Lear.

Her love of Shakespeare’s plays dates back to her childhood when she was just 10 years old and read­ing Tales from Shakespeare, an adap­ta­tion for chil­dren of Shakespeare’s plays writ­ten by Charles Lamb and his sis­ter Mary Lamb in 1807.

The book got her started read­ing Shakespeare’s plays.

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‘‘I Night’s read A Mid­sum­mer

Dream and the lan­guage just leapt off the page at me

‘‘I made up my mind that I was go­ing to go to Strat­fordupon-Avon and act in Shakespeare.’’

She ini­tially stud­ied arts for a year at the univer­sity and has fond mem­o­ries of her time on cam­pus in­clud­ing English lec­tures by Pro­fes­sor Syd­ney Mus­grove, who cre­ated the univer­sity’s Sum­mer Shakespeare in 1963.

She stud­ied at RADA in Lon­don be­fore ful­fill­ing her dream to act in Shake­spearean plays in Strat­fordupon-Avon and go­ing on to be­come an ac­claimed the­atre and tele­vi­sion ac­tor.

Ms Har­row en­joys re­turn­ing to the univer­sity.

‘‘The most im­por­tant thing for me is the racial diver­sity now; it used to be that most of the stu­dents were Pakeha.’’

Ms Har­row says the work­shops will help ac­tors con­nect to the words.

‘‘In the the­atre – par­tic­u­larly with Shakespeare – the ac­tor is re­quired to rel­ish the lan­guage, you can’t mum­ble Shakespeare.

‘‘Once you’ve learnt to un­lock the se­crets of the text it makes it so much more re­ward­ing for the ac­tor and the au­di­ence.’’

Par­tic­i­pants can at­tend one or both work­shops.

They should pre­pare an au­di­tion-length Shakespeare mono­logue to present and bring a print-out of the mono- logue for Ms Har­row and fel­low hosts to fol­low dur­ing the au­di­tion.

Places are lim­ited to 30 peo­ple by ad­vance reg­is­tra­tion to t.bishop@ auck­land.ac.nz.

The work­shops are on Satur­day and Sun­day in the univer­sity’s drama stu­dio, Level 3, 14A Sy­monds St (Build­ing 206) be­tween 10am and 5pm.

Au­di­tions for Per­i­cles, Prince of Tyre will be held in early Novem­ber.

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