Lady Macbeth duo are double trouble
Phoebe Mason and Olivia Tennet found it tough to choose which scenes to perform in the Shielah Winn Festival of Shakespeare earlier this month.
The Epsom Girls Grammar acting partners both wanted to play Lady Macbeth, their favourite Shakespearean character, in the national final of the competition.
After some deliberation, the girls decided they would both take on the role.
And not only did they succeed in having two actors play one character at the same time, they also won four awards for their performance.
They took away the Frona King award for student directed scene, the Wellington Shakespeare Society Cup for a production showing best understanding of the play, the award for the most co-operative school and the Peter Vere-Jones award for best performance.
The girls say they’re surprised by their achievement.
“We feel we did pretty brilliantly because it was a really big competition,” says Phoebe.
“We are really stoked and pleasantly surprised.”
The Sheilah Winn Festival of Shakespeare in Schools has been running since 1992.
Regional competitions took place around the country before the final in Wellington on Queen’s Birthday weekend.
Students performed pieces of their choice between five and 15 minutes long.
Before the competition the girls were busy preparing for another school drama production so they had only a short time to prepare between rehearsals.
Olivia says she enjoys the challenge of performing Shakespeare.
“It’s very dramatic and it’s great how his ideas are still relevant today,” she says.
“It’s so gritty and you can really get your teeth into it.”
“It’s initially harder to learn but once you’ve got it, it just flows,” says Phoebe.
“There’s so much rhythm in the language.”
Epsom Girls Grammar head of drama Jane Griffin says the girls’ performance was amazing.
“It was really cleverly devised and they really interpreted the meaning,” she says.
“It was very sharply choreographed and simple.”
From their performance in the competition, the girls have been se- lected to take part in the National Schools Shakespeare production.
From there they will have the chance to be selected for a trip to act at the Globe Theatre in London next year.
Interpretation: Epsom Girls Grammar students Phoebe Mason, left, and Olivia Tennet perform at the Sheilah Winn Shakespeare Festival. They won four prizes for their interpretation of Lady Macbeth.