In Messina, a messenger brings news that Don Pedro, a prince from Aragon, will return that night from a successful battle, alongside Claudio and Benedick. Beatrice, niece of Leonato, a governor of Messina, asks the messenger about Benedick and makes sarcastic remarks about his ineptitude as a soldier. Leonato explains that "There is a kind of merry war betwixt Signor Benedick and her."Upon the soldiers' arrival, Leonato welcomes Don Pedro and invites him to stay for a month, Benedick and Beatrice resume their "merry war", and Pedro's illegitimate brother Don John is introduced. Claudio's feelings for Hero, Leonato's only daughter, are rekindled upon seeing her, and Claudio soon announces to Benedick his intention to court her. Benedick, who openly despises marriage, tries to dissuade his friend, but Don Pedro encourages the marriage. Benedick swears that he will never get married. Don Pedro laughs at him and tells him that when he has found the right person he shall get married.A masquerade ball is planned in celebration of the end of the war, giving a disguised Don Pedro the opportunity to woo Hero on Claudio's behalf. Don John uses this situation to get revenge on him by telling Claudio that Don Pedro is wooing Hero for himself. Crestfallen, Claudio rails against the entrapments of beauty, but the misunderstanding is later resolved and Claudio is promised Hero's hand in marriage.Meanwhile, Benedick and Beatrice have danced together, trading disparaging remarks under cover of their masks. Benedick is stung at hearing himself described as "the prince's jester, a very dull fool," and yearns to be spared the company of "Lady Tongue". Don Pedro and his men, bored at the prospect of waiting a week for the wedding, concoct a plan to match-make between Benedick and Beatrice. They arrange for the former to overhear a conversation in which they declare that the latter is madly in love with him, but is too afraid to tell him as their pride is the main impediment to their courtship. Meanwhile, Hero and her maid, Ursula, ensure Beatrice overhears them discuss Benedick's undying love for her. The tricks have the desired effect: both Benedick and Beatrice are delighted to think they are the object of unrequited love, and both accordingly resolve to mend their faults and declare their love for each other.
Equal parts tragedy and history play, Richard III chronicles the rise and short reign of its diabolical title character. Of this masterful creation, esteemed critic Harold Bloom has written, The manipulative, highly self-conscious, obsessed hero-villain moves himself from being the passive sufferer of his own moral and/or physical deformity to becoming a highly active melodramatist. Portrayed as England's curse and as his own worst enemy, the jealous and ambitious Richard would find little glory or peace awaiting him upon his ascension to England's throne. This collection of critical essays about the Bard's Richard III includes classic criticism from a number of notable critics throughout the centuries. Edited by Bloom, this title also features a handy index for quick reference.
Much Ado has always been popular on the stage. This edition pays especial attention to the history and range of theatrical interpretation, in which the most famous actors, from the time of Garrick to the present, have appeared as the sparring lovers Benedick and Beatrice. A full commentary includes annotation of the many sexual jokes in the play that have been obscured by the complexity of Elizabethan language. For this updated edition Angela Stock has added a new section to the Introduction in which she reviews the romantic and the darker, more cynical aspects of the play in the light of late twentieth-century stage, film and critical interpretations. She also tackles the interesting question of Beatrice's proper age and the critical fortunes of Hero and Claudio in terms of the play's interest in sexuality and misogyny, eavesdropping and deception.
The first edition of Much Ado About Nothing developed by and for the RSC, including an introduction from Jonathan Bate and interviews with key RSC directors and actors
This cutting of Shakespeare's utterly charming and popular comedy MUCH ADO ABOUT NOTHING features five key scenes, including Beatrice and Benedick's classic initial word-battle, and the uproarious hide-and-seek deception of the two ''lovers. '' The next scenes are the brutal rejection of Hero at the altar by a deceived Claudio and the timeless manhandling of the English language by the bumbling constable Dogberry. In the fifth and final scene, Shakespeare resolves the play's conflicts and confusions, and love reigns again. This cutting really tells the story, and includes some sidesplitting stage business, particularly the back-and-forth physical and verbal parrying between Benedick and Beatrice.
Presents the original text of Shakespeare's play side by side with a modern version.
|Author||: William Shakespeare|
|Release Date||: 1886|
|Pages||: 329 pages|
Includes scene by scene synopsis-character sketches, selected examination questions.