Anyone who reads this blog probably knows I’m a huge fan of Shakespeare. So when I heard about “Half the Page Is a Stage” I was beyond intrigued. The idea is a great one, take Shakespeare original text and pair it with filmed performances of that play. The result is a new resource that could make Shakespeare’s work more accessible to those who are often intimidated by him.
So far Macbeth and A Midsummer Night’s Dream are the two plays that WordPlay Shakespeare has made available. Using an iPad readers can now watch a complete performance of the play they are reading right alongside the text.
The one issue I’ve always had with reading Shakespeare is that it’s meant to be seen and not read. If you only read the text and you aren’t accustomed to the language, it’s sometimes difficult to get the humor and the heart of the work. This new twist breathes new life into the work. I can’t imagine reading Macbeth for the first time while seeing it performed on the same screen. What a fantastic way to introduce people to Shakespeare! I think this would work particularly well for high school students.
If you’re interested in checking out the book/play you can do so here. I love it when technology is used to encourage reading instead of the opposite.
Photos of text and live performances by moi.