Tuesday, April 23, 2013

April 23 Lesson: Baz Luhrmann's Interpretation of Act 1 from Romeo and Juliet

Essential Question: What strategies might help us to better understand drama and, specifically, Shakespeare’s plays? 

I. Do Now (Answer the following)(8 minutes): 
  • What might we learn by creating a mask that represents a character from Romeo and Juliet?
  • In conjunction with the mask, what understanding might we have by reciting a line(s) while “wearing” the mask? 
  • What is meant by: we will look at two interpretations of Shakespeare’s drama Romeo and Juliet
  • Who defines these interpretations and what benefit might we get as critical thinkers from seeing two interpretations of the same play? 

II. Listening Exercise: Shakespeare’s Life (20 minutes). Re-read the “Anticipation Guide” questions from yesterday. Answer these questions as you listen to the narrative about Shakespeare’s life. Take notes in the margin of points emphasized during the reading. Be prepared to be quizzed about the content of this narrative.
A question to think about: Who was Shakespeare and what was Elizabethan England like? 
Anticipation Guide: Answer the following questions before listening to a narrative about Shakespeare and his time.
1.Shakespeare was born in London. T or F
2.Shakespeare father was a glove maker and a politician. T or F
3.Theatre performances were much like traveling circuses that moved from town to town, set-up, performed and moved on. T or F 
4.One of the first plays that young William Shakespeare may have seen was Romeo and Juliet. T or F
5.Early plays consisted of elaborate costumes, scenery, props and sound effects. T or F
6.William has an Oxford University education; this was where he learned Latin and Greek, poetry and history. T or F
7.Some believe that Shakespeare was likely apprenticed to a blacksmith or a printer. T or F
8.Shakespeare married and had a daughter named Susanna and a set of twins named Hamnet and Judith. T or F
9.In the London of Shakespeare’s time, people loved plays. For a penny you could stand in the open air and watch a play. The only way you knew if there was a play in town would be if a town crier yelled of the coming event. T or F
10.Costumes in this time were usually hand-me-downs from rich nobleman rather than something made especially for the purpose of a play. T or F
11.Although many people loved plays, as did the Puritans, a powerful religious group, Queen Elizabeth was always threatening to shut the theaters down believing that plays were “sinful, heathenish, lewd, and ungodly.” T or F
12.Playwriting added immensely to the growth of theater, and one of the most popular and talented playwrights of this time was the well-educated Christopher Marlowe. T or F
13.By 1592, Shakespeare is known too, and he became the subject of jealousy by those who were of Marlowe’s class; they made the remark that he was “an upstart crow, beautified with our feathers” when his first play appeared and was a hit. T or F
14.Shakespeare also wrote long and short poems, or sonnets in addition to his many plays. T or F
15. Some of the poems Shakespeare wrote he dedicated to the Earl of Southampton which resulted in a handsome gift of money. T or F

III. Interpretations. An interpretation is the act of making meaning from something, such as a text. an interpretation is based on the reader, actor or director’s own experiences as well as on the actual words of the text. As you watch Franco Zefferelli’s Romeo and Juliet, Act I, Scenes 1-5 write notes in the chart below, paying particular attention to theatrical elements of costumes and music in each version. Ask yourself, “Why would the director choose those costumes and music for the first meeting between Romeo and Juliet?

We have read these scenes in class. 

  • Fill-in the chart below as thoroughly as possible while we watch. We will JIGSAW with one side of the room focusing on Music and the other Music. 

IV. Exit Ticket: Below your do-now response for today: explain how this cinematic version  of the drama differs from what you imagined during our class reading of these scenes? 

Version:       Costumes:      Music:      What is the effect of the 
                                                                director's choices:



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