Acting : Shakespeare by Brandon Koots

Brandon Koots

Shakespeare

Have one of you ever read a Shakespeare book in which they "translate" the play to normal English? I got a book like that to read for school during this schoolyear. And on each page you have one side with the original text and the other written in English we use now. I think that is to make it easier for us to understand. Now I noticed I can get sone monologues from the book, should I use the original text? Or can I use the other one? Which for me is much much easier in pronunciation and understanding and everything

D Marcus

Sometimes doing what is much easier is not in an actors best interest. Sometimes the challenge is what helps an actor grow. Yes, you can use the contemporary translation. Do so with the understanding that some people will recognize it and wonder why you are taking the much easier way and not challenging yourself.

Brandon Koots

thanks for the comment. I will try to do the original one. I am on a monologue spree. Looking for many monologues to film just for myself. Any ideas where I can get from movies/tv shows?

Joel Applegate

Brandon - strongly advise using the original text. It'll up your game in ways you didn't think of. His language packs so much thought in a short sentence, it teaches you about the story, the character - and ultimately yourself! And there are plenty of good editions with great notes on the text that will explain everything. That said, it still sounds like it might be fun to play around with the modern English version - that could teach you something too. If you use the modern version, I'd recommend telling your auditors that's what you're doing - or not - depending on the atmosphere. Just don't let them think you're trying to pass it off as as the original text. It's a great exercise anyway - and probably fun to experiment with. Good luck!

Brandon Koots

Thanks for the advice. I will try to do the original one. I just mess up every word when I try. I think I just need practicing. Thanks again!!

D Marcus

Practice. Isn't that what acting is? Isn't that what life is? You face the challenge.

Julianne Ruth Resetani

Hi Brandon, I used to be an English teacher and those books are called NO FEAR SHAKESPEARE. I think they are excellent to help you understand the meaning of Shakespeare's text. That way when you do speak or act his original words--you will be able to put more into your performance since you'll know how/what you're saying/feeling!

Julianne Ruth Resetani

Also--watch and listen to any Shakespeare play, film or monologue you can find. Watch David Tennant's TO BE OR NOT TO BE on youtube--he's so amazing!

Brandon Koots

It makes it more easier to understand indeed. Which I absolutely love. Because we will have to make an exam of the book also. I will look up the video on YouTube. Thanks!

Julianne Ruth Resetani

Also good to remember is that Shakespeare never meant for his plays to be sat down and read--they were meant to be performed.

Brandon Koots

Julianne, David Tennant is really amazing. Just watched his video and it's so amazing!! I also added a movie of Macbeth to m watch list though I already started watching it. Really interesting

Brandon Koots

Jason, thanks for the tips on punctuation. I always wondered where I should take a break or something since some of the sentences are pretty long. And that really helped me understand how I should do it. Also downloaded the first folio of Macbeth for when I'm going to do the soliloquy. And watching the movie to see how THEY do it in there. thanks!

Cassidy Cash

If you're preparing a monologue for an audition, you need to consider what the casting director is going to care about primarily. It's not going to be important to them what you understand best, it will matter what they need to see for their production. So I would ask your casting director for their preference then try to deliver what they need. If you're just getting into the plays because you like them yourself, then I suggest going to the theater and seeing your monologue performed on stage. In fact, even if you are preparing for an audition, going to the theater to see someone else do it is a good exercise. After all, that person was cast for that role, so their performance of the monologue you're considering will inform your choices.

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