Shakespeare frequently takes advantage of an audience’s initial alertness, suggesting through the langue the kind of play they are about to see. Directors naturally look for ways to highlight these ideas and images.
The lights came up on the 1990 Royals Shakespeare Company production to reveal Beatrice defeating her uncle in a fencing bout, much to the delight of the women watching. As you read lines 1-118, and discuss why you think the director chose to open the paly this way. We’ll watch Kenneth Branagh’s version of the film and discuss how he opens the film. You can add to your annotations in class.