Archive for the ‘Set & Props’ Category
mShakespeare performs its final Twelfth Night, Act 2 Open Ended Run performance 1 PM on Sunday April 18…
Come catch all this stuff on-stage before it’s too late:
Check out the mShakespeare/SL Shakespeare programme archive for yet more programme booklets from this and other productions!
The Metaverse Shakespeare Company (MSC) welcomes your participation in our experimental try-out of “Crowdsourced Interactive Set Design” — where you get to help decorate our sets by sending in your graffiti message or flyer/poster idea for the City Wall of Illyria in the Act 2, Scene 1 set. The walls will be updated on Fridays with your new wall adornments.
Here’s the wall (bare, and in need of your messages!):
and… Send in your graffiti messages and flyer ideas as comments to this thread–below:
In Twelfth Night, Act 2, Scene 4, in response’s to Orsino’s arrogant assertions that a woman’s love cannot be as great as the love of a man’s, Viola tries conveying the unrequited love a woman might have for a man. The mention of “patience on a monument” deserves some visual cues, so I’d zoom in directly on the line that mentions this motif in context (you can see the rest of my analysis of Viola’s lines to Orsino in Scene 4 here).
A blank, my lord. She never told her love,
But let concealment, like a worm i’ the bud,
Feed on her damask cheek: she pined in thought,
She sat like patience on a monument,
Smiling at grief. Was not this love indeed?
The mention of “patience on a monument” seems as out of place as the “worm i’the bud”, so it seems natural that Viola’s character might have “taken inspiration” via an item on the set.
“Patience on a Monument” is often a sculpture on the tombs of kings, most famously seen in Louis XII’s tomb (as noted in Heckscher, William S. “Shakespeare in His Relationship to the Visual Arts: A Study in Paradox”. Research Opportunities in Renaissance Drama. 13-14 (1970-71). Eds. Schoenbaum, S. pp 40). The two images cited here both show a seated woman in “patient grief” (for the lack of a better phrase). A woman chained, whether to a windowsill (to pine forever, for the rest of her life), or a woman chained to a pole–as more poignantly shown in that St. Denis tomb of Louis XII’s, whose figure is also turned in a pose that shows both strain from and desire to leave this post, and yet, she cannot.
More imagery of Louis XII‘s tomb is available here and here and here and here, specifically on that sculpture of the cardinal virtue of Patience here and here. A closeup showing sculpture texture is here.
As mentioned in my director’s notes, it might be because the Duke has a statue reminiscent of such imagery, in his court. Or, it might be because Viola had just sauntered through Olivia’s Garden, as emissary to Olivia from Orsiino (and back again)–having seen the stylized “guardian sculpture” on the grave of Olivia’s late brother.
The earlier post on the AP2 playscript is actually slightly flawed–done in haste, prior to a full close-reading. Here’s the actually updated *good* playscript–with most of the blocking we’d use, and more! pdf here and celtx here.
Analysis aside, here are some neat effects and such to look for:
Continuing our tradition of introducing a new technological innovation with each show —
- we will showcase physically accurate effects onstage…
- whizzing urine a la Sir Toby Belch;
- classic apple physics, but with a bout of booze, a broadsword and a bit of bondage…
- on-stage a flower whose petals slowly fall, even as it wilts
- a grandiose shadow AO – befitting a self-smitten Malvolio;
- avatar shape changes during a show to vividly change expressions
- and, moving hair! – in Scene 4, Orsino’s hair turns skittish, as it blows/moves in the sea wind.
That and more, all revealed in the playscript above! For further details, see my Director’s Notes.
Act 2, Scene 5, set in Olivia’s Garden, is the famous “M.O.A.I.” scene where Maria shows her wiles, and Malvolio betrays his not-so-puritanical ego. This is Part I of several Director’s Notes blog entries on Twelfth Night: Act 2, Scene 5.
Curiously, Feste completely skips this scene, perhaps because the old fool is more accustomed to nocturnal hours (when there’s likelier to be sixpence for his songs), or is just generally only haphazardly present (thus warranting Maria’s reprimanding words in the brief exchange between Feste and Maria in the opening of Act 1, Scene 5)–anyway, instead of Feste, we have Fabian, a gentleman servant of Olivia’s, with a penchant for bear-baiting (and, who has a grudge towards Malvolio, for getting him in trouble for staging a bear-baiting in Olivia’s garden). Fabian opens Scene 5 with an era-joke about being “boil’d to death by Melancholy (thought by era “medical science” to be a cold humour)”:
Toby: Come thy ways, Signior Fabian.
Fabian: Nah, I’ll come: if I lose a scruple of this sport, let me be boil’d to death with Melancholy.
Toby: Wouldst thou not be glad to have the niggardly Rascally sheep-biter, come by some notable shame?
Then again, perhaps Feste isn’t present in this scene is due to his intuitive sense of tact (Shakespeare’s fools always seem to have that extra bit of wisdom, quintessentially lacking in his star characters)–it’s a scene where the perpetrators could very-well be caught in their deed to render some “notable shame” to their common enemy.
Fabian: I would exult man: you know he brought me out of favour with my Lady, about a Bear-baiting here.
Toby: To anger him we’ll have the Bear again, and we will fool him black and blue, shall we not, Sir Andrew?
Andrew: And we do not, it is pity of our lives.
Like the others, Fabian’s here, having been slighted by Malvolio. Malvolio tattled on Fabian for holding a bear-baiting session in Olivia’s garden (this is rather something *no one wants!* in their backyard — aside from the damage from the animal slaughter, there’d be massive cleanup from the refuse left by the raucous audience such events draw–completely unseemly!); this suggests that Olivia’s garden is large, and that she might be something of a menagerie. (Our OEP2 set will contain quite a few animals.)
Toby seems more feisty and violent than usual, alluding to beating Malvolio “black and blue” after just a few words, and even calling Maria, his “Metal of India (gold)”, a villain (though this might be a term of endearment of sorts).
Maria enters the garden, perhaps breathless, Malvolio being so close behind her:
Toby: Here comes the little villain: how now, my Metal of India?
Maria: Get ye all three into the box tree!
The three men duck behind the boxtree, while Maria throws the letter, for the “trout that must be caught with tickling”:
Maria: Malvolio’s coming down this walk; he has been yonder i’the Sun practicing behavior to his own shadow this half hour. Observe him for the love of Mockery: for I know this Letter will make a contemplate Idiot of him. Close, in the name of jesting, lye thou there! For here comes the Trout, that must be caught with tickling.
Maria, curiously, leaves. (Perhaps this task of tricking a steward is too coarse for a lady, or Maria would rather not be present to “jinx her plot”, or maybe Shakespeare anticipated emergency doubling’s.)
Scheduling is still TBD… (alas, the complications of working with an international cast with everyone in their own countries!)
Continuing our tradition of introducing a new technological innovation with each show — we will showcase physically accurate effects onstage… such as whizzing urine a la Sir Toby Belch; a grandiose shadow AO – befitting a self-smitten Malvolio; and the classic apple physics, but with a bout of booze, a broadsword and a bit of bondage… That and more, all revealed in the playscript above!
We also hope to test out Aussie timing — tentatively 10 PM SLT. Aussies, is that a good time?
Also… We are rebranding! Name to be revealed soon. Stay tuned!