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English Tuition & Homestay in Cornwall

‘The Winter’s Tale’- a Christmas Shakespeare Course

During December we ran our last course for 2016. We selected Shakespeare’s The Winter’s Tale for this special Christmas course and as always we had a wonderful, creative time here at Novel English!

The first two days of the course were devoted to the children’s’ creative writing projects, where they created their own Winter’s Tale, as well as reading the play and beginning improvisations. We decided to write and act out our own scene, based around the Oracle in Delphi which is not actually shown in Shakespeare’s original script but is obviously a turning point in the lives and fortunes of the characters.

On the penultimate day of the course, which fell on the Winter Solstice (21st of December), we headed down to the beach (perhaps you’d recognise it from the BBC’s Poldark series!) to do improvisation, and get a film of the children acting in an authentic setting! The raging December waves, high winds, and towering clifftops were perfect for the ‘bear scene’, when the character Antigonus sails to the shore of Bohemia to dispose of King Leontes’ unwanted baby daughter, Perdita, only to be killed soon after by a wandering bear (perhaps one of Shakespeare’s most bizarre and unexpected moments of writing!) The beach was also an apt time to perform Old Father Time’s speech, to signify the passing of time (16 years to be exact!) and Perdita’s growing up in a household of humble shepherds.

On the last evening the children stayed up late by the roaring fire in the Trelugga living room and played tradition Christmas games beside the fire.

On the last day the participants performed to the parents and families as usual, and everyone ate the huge homemade chocolate Yuletide log in celebration of Christmas.

As always we would like to thank all the participants and their families for helping make the course such a success! We do hope you all had a wonderful Christmas and would like to wish you a very HAPPY NEW YEAR 2017!