The Fall (or Rise?) of Shakespeare’s Comic Eccentrics

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Mondays, 1:00-2:30 p.m. 8-week course begins 9/14

Four men alike in grandiose spirit. Four plays different in setting and story. Four standout characters teeter- ing in harm’s way. What happens when reality bites and their lives are rocked. Will they fall? Will they tread water? Or will they rise, stoop to conquer, reinvent themselves, assume new roles, travel in new directions? Will they become different men with grandeur calmed and purpose re-envisioned? Explore the worlds of Sir John Falstaff in Henry IV, Part 1, Malvolio in Twelfth Night, Parolles in All’s Well That Ends Well, and Don Adriano de Armado in Love’s Labour’s Lost. Class Structure: Four plays, one for each of four bi-weekly exploration classes; plus, an optional “further-exploration” discussion on the Monday following each class. Readings: Any Shakespeare playbooks of the four plays are acceptable; the Arden playbooks contain extensive footnotes and clarifications. Additional class resources will be emailed in advance.

Joseph Coté’s classical actor training here and abroad has led to performances in 14 of the plays by William Shakespeare on a variety of professional and amateur stages. His class explorations of the plays of the Bard unfold from a “real people” performance point-of-study rather than from an historic, scholarly angle.

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