This detailed Compare and Contrast written guide equips teachers with the means to analyse two different productions of Shakespeare's renowned comedy.
Written for Digital Theatre Plus by Lisa Peter, a Lecturer in Shakespeare Studies at Shakespeare Birthplace Trust, each section can be downloaded and reviewed as part of classroom study and explores key staging decisions, differences and similarities in the productions' approach to design, and highlights moments of interpretive choice in performance:
'Michael Boyd’s 2010 staging at the Royal Shakespeare Company’s Courtyard Theatre in Stratford-upon-Avon is astonishingly sombre in tone at times, and shies away from depicting Arden as a pastoral idyll of trees, sheep and happy hunters. This world is decidedly colder than often envisaged, but the staging therefore brings out moments of comedy that would otherwise get lost.
Thea Sharrock’s Globe production from 2009 on the other hand, operates in a very different theatre space. It has to make do with what a reconstructed Elizabethan playhouse has to offer and tries to play to its strengths in terms of audience interaction and comedy.'