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BDBA 6750A - All the World's a Stage Within a Stage (Shakespeare)

Type d'enseignement : Workshop

Semester : Autumn 2017-2018

Number of hours : 24

Language of tuition : English


Proficient level of English - students should be able to read and understand Shakespeare in the original

Course Description

Be it to unmask a usurper, seduce a lover, amuse a friend, or scare an enemy, Shakespearean characters often find themselves implicated, willy-nilly, in plays within plays, or otherwise role playing on stage. By multiplying levels of theatricality and turning his characters into actors, directors, and stage-managers, Shakespeare advances the plot while offering insights on theatre as a medium. The students, themselves alternatively actors and directors, will explore the following questions: what are the stakes of a play within a play, and why does the author use this technique? Is acting different when it is directed at the audience on a stage and at the actual audience — and if so, how? What does the distance created by the embedding of levels reveal about theatre, and about the way it touches us? The class will revolve around scenes from Hamlet, A Midsummer Night's Dream, and The Tempest.


ORDINAIRE, Mirabelle (Comédienne et dramaturge)

Pedagogical format

Understand the theatrical medium from the inside thanks to the mirror provided by the embedding of theatrical levels Explore the spatial possibilities between stage and house, actors and audience Understand what is at stake in the relationships between director, actors, and audience

Course validation

The students will receive three grades: the first will evaluate their involvement as actors, and their capacity and willingness to collaborate with their acting partners; the second will evaluate their involvement as directors, the creativity and originality of their concept, and their ease in directing others; the third will evaluate the final presentation.

Required reading

  • Shakespeare, Hamlet
  • Shakespeare, A Midsummer Night's Dream
  • Shakespeare, The Tempest