Perse students perform Shakespeare on West End stage
Isabel Wrigley, finalist at the ESU Performing Shakespeare competition.
Two Year 9 students, Isabel Wrigley and Camillo Padulli, performed at the English Speaking Union’s “Performing Shakespeare” competition.
The National Grand Final, timed fittingly at the beginning of National Shakespeare Week, brought together finalists from all over the UK in the 11-14 age range on the Gielgud Theatre’s stage in London, celebrating new and inventive interpretations of Shakespeare’s monologues.
Both Perse students performed Shylock’s soliloquy from Act 3 Scene 1 of “The Merchant of Venice” to the audience of respected theatre practitioners and parents.
Listen below to Isabel reciting her version of the soliloquy:
In addition to the performances themselves, the students were given a warm up by professional voice and speech coach Sue Meadows, and were given a lecture on the cultural impact of performing Shakespeare by academic Sita Thomas. After the performances, Camillo was given on-stage direction by actor John Pfumojena, who is soon to appear at Shakespeare’s Globe in Twelfth Night as Sebastian.
Though the Perse students didn’t win, the day provided an excellent opportunity to not only showcase skills, but to develop new ones.
Before the competition, Camillo and Isabel explained the reasons they both selected Shylock’s soliloquy, and what they could each bring to the character.
Click below to listen to Camillo:
Click below to listen to Isabel: