Aspiring actors have undergone expert instruction from one of theatre’s most acclaimed directors. University Chancellor Sir Peter Hall, who founded the Royal Shakespeare Company, shared his knowledge with third year drama students during a two-day masterclass on performing Shakespearean verse.
Sir Peter coached the 25 participants in the techniques needed to read the playwright’s works and gave them an insight into the skills needed to bring the characters to life. “He revealed how he treated the text in a similar way to a musical score and advised the actors about varying the pace of their speech, pausing and emphasis,” drama field leader Frank Whately said.
Student Charlotte Johnson was confident Sir Peter’s tuition would stand her in good stead for the future. “Learning when to breathe during long lines was one of the most difficult points to perfect but Sir Peter was extremely patient and very constructive in his comments,” she said. Fellow student Rachel Labovitch could hardly believe her good fortune when Sir Peter took time out to give group members individual tips on improving their interpretation. “It was really inspiring to work so closely with a man who is regarded as one of the greatest Shakespearean directors,” she said.