Course Information



Shakespeare's Time

Chronology of Plays

Study Questions

Discussion Forum

Reserve List

Resource Links

Sample Essays

Screenings of the Plays

There will be a screening each Thursday at 7 pm. in 2 Rockefeller. Please note that the quiz each Monday morning will be keyed to the reading, not to the performances.

June 28 - Comedy of Errors
(BBC 1983 Videotape 1153)

Directed by James Cellan Jones. Cast: Suzanne Bertish, Roger Daltrey, Michael Kitchen, Joanne Pearce. Presents William Shakespeare's play about two pairs of twins involved in a series of mistaken identities.

July 5 - Taming of the Shrew
(BBC 1980 Videotape 1179)

Produced by Cedric Messina and Jonathan Miller. Cast: John Cleese, Sarah Badel. A dramatization of Shakespeare's play in which the marriage of two strong-minded people provides the spark for a comic confrontation between the sexes.

July 12 - Richard III
(Al Pacino's Looking for Richard 1996 Videotape 1649)

Based on William Shakespeare's Richard III. Originally released as motion picture in 1996. Director of photography, Robert Leacock ; music, Howard Shore. Cast: Penelope Allen, Alec Baldwin, Kevin Conway, Al Pacino, Estelle Parsons, Aidan Quinn, Winona Ryder, Kevin Spacey, Harris Yulin. Interviews: Sir John Gielgud, Kenneth Branagh, Vanessa Redgrave, James Earl Jones, Kevin Kline. Director Al Pacino juxtaposes scene's from Richard III, scenes of rehearsals for Richard III, and sessions where parties involved discuss the play, the times that shaped the play and the events that happened at the time the play is set. Interviews with mostly British actors are also included, attempting to explain why American actors have more problems performing Shakespearean plays than they do.

July 19 - Henry V
(Adapted for the screen by Kenneth Branagh; directed by Kenneth Branagh. Videotape 2537)

Videocassette release of the 1989 motion picture. Editor, Michael Bradsell; music composer, Patrick Doyle. Cast: Kenneth Branagh, Paul Scofield, Derek Jacobi, Ian Holm, Emma Thompson, Alec McCowen, Judi Dench, Christian Bale; City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, Simon Rattle, conductor. Young King Henry of England asserts a hereditary claim to the throne of France, gathering an army and embarking on a course that will lead to one of England's greatest battlefield triumphs and forever change the face of Europe.

July 26 - Merchant of Venice
(BBC 1980 Videotape 1170)

August 2 - Twelfth Night
(or, What you will, directed by Trevor Nunn; screenplay by Trevor Nunn. Videotape 1619)

Originally released as motion picture in 1996. Director of photography, Clive Tickner ; production design, Sophie Becher; costume design, John Bright; editor, Peter Boyle; music, Shaun Davey. Cast: Helena Bonham Carter, Richard E. Grant, Nigel Hawthorne, Ben Kingsley, Mel Smith, Imelda Staunton, Toby Stephens, Imogen Stubbs. Twins Viola and Sebastian lose each other in a shipwreck and through a series of escapes involving disguise and mistaken identity eventually find each other and new loves as well.

August 9 - Hamlet
(BBC 1993 Directed by Rodney Bennet. Videotape 1875)

Producer, Cedric Messina ; director, Rodney Bennett. Cast: Derek Jacobi, Claire Bloom, Patrick Stewart, Eric Porter, Lalla Ward, David Robb, Patrick Allen, Robert Swann, Jonathan Hyde, Geoffrey Bateman, Emrys James, Jason Kemp, Geoffrey Beevers.

August 16 - Othello
(1982 Videotape 1174)

Cast: Anthony Hopkins (Othello), Bob Hoskins (Iago), Penelope Wilton (Desdemona)