poetry

Shakespeare Meets Hip Hop- Making a difference in the lives of students!

Shakespeare Meets Hip Hop is a vibrant, interactive presentation that demonstrates how modern hip-hop shares many similarities with the themes, language and rhythm used by Shakespeare. Both are full of poetry, word play and lyricism, and both deal with what it is to be human.

Students at Central Toronto Academy were inspired by the Shakespeare Meets Hip Hop performance, and found a way to combine Shakespeare and rap for their final Drama class project! Find out what they had to say about the show, and watch them rehearse!

The Shakespeare Meets Hip Hop tour will be back for the 2015/16 season! Visit our website or send an e-mail to info@shakespeareinaction.org for more info!

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Farewell February; Hello March!

February was a short but busy month for us at Shakespeare in Action, as it marked our 5th annual Sonnets by Kids for Valentine’s Day fundraiser!

Sonnet Kids – Dushane, Ivy, Nicholas, Saskia, and Thomas – all began their journeys in different places – our Summer Camp for Kids and the TD Shakespeare for Kids Library Club sessions at Brookbanks, Highland Creek, Main Street, and St. Jamestown public libraries.

We spent time together unpacking sonnets 18, 29, 105, and 116 – discovering rhyme scheme, sorting out characters’ thoughts and feelings, and using the hundred-odd words that the kids recognized to decode the half dozen words that they had never seen before. On Valentine’s Day, they were ready to deliver sonnet-grams to unsuspecting recipients in Canada and the US!

Thank you: To all the parents and guardians for their time and encouragement; to CBC Metro Morning for showcasing this program and helping us reach a new audience; to Pizzaville (College and Roxton), Metro (College and Shaw), and our favourite bookstore, Doug Miller Books (now at 650 Bloor Street West!) for adding the gift of great food and reads to our festivities; and to everyone who purchased a sonnet for a loved one, in support of literacy and live theatre!

A warm thank-you to all the supporters of Sonnets by Kids for Valentine's Day!

A warm thank-you to everyone who supported Sonnets by Kids for Valentine’s Day!

Sonnet Buddy, Kyle and Sonnet Kid, Thomas, prepare for one of the first calls!

Sonnet Buddy, Kyle and Sonnet Kid, Thomas, prepare for one of the first calls!

Ivy delivers a sonnet, while Sonnet Buddy, Anna, looks on.

Ivy delivers a sonnet, while Sonnet Buddy, Anna, looks on.

Sonnet Buddy, Asha, lends a hand as Nicholas signs off on a sonnet.

Sonnet Buddy, Asha, lends a hand as Nicholas signs off on a sonnet.

It's time to give Shakespeare a makeover...or shall we say a Shakeover?!  Looks like the Bard is ready for "the winter of our discontent."

It’s time to give Shakespeare a makeover…or shall we say a Shakeover?! Looks like the Bard is ready for “the winter of our discontent.”

Sonnet Kid, Dushane, with Sonnet Buddy, Jenny!

Sonnet Kid, Dushane, with Sonnet Buddy, Jenny!

Sonnet Kid, Saskia, and Sonnet Buddy, Rebecca smile for the camera.

Sonnet Kid, Saskia, and Sonnet Buddy, Rebecca! And, wait, who’s that in the middle?

Our amazing Sonnet Kids! L-R: Saskia, Nicholas, Thomas, Ivy, and Dushane.

Our amazing Sonnet Kids! L-R: Saskia, Nicholas, Thomas, Ivy, and Dushane.

With the Sonnet Buddies! Back Row, L-R: Rebecca, Asha, Kyle, Anna, and Jenny!

With the Sonnet Buddies! Back Row, L-R: Rebecca, Asha, Kyle, Anna, and Jenny!

8-year-old Ivy's translation of Sonnet 116

8-year-old Ivy’s translation of Sonnet 116

Shakespeare Meets Hip Hop- Touring May 4-15, 2015!

Shakespeare in Action’s popular touring interactive production Shakespeare Meets Hip Hop is back for the Spring of 2015!

Shakespeare Meets Hip Hop is a vibrant, interactive presentation that demonstrates how modern hip-hop shares many similarities with the themes, language and rhythm used by Shakespeare. Both are full of poetry, word play and lyricism and both deal with what it is to be human.

The presentation features three professional actors, thumb-nail sketches of Shakespeare’s life and times, and key scenes & speeches from Shakespeare’s most popularly studied plays – including Macbeth, Romeo & Juliet and Hamlet.

Shakespeare Meets Hip Hop brings alive the parallels between the world of the plays and their own contemporary experience. It’s the perfect complement to your in-class teaching of a specific play, in the beginning, in the middle or at the end.

This semester, help your students break through the Elizabethan language barrier with Shakespeare Meets Hip Hop!

For more information on the Shakespeare Meets Hip Hop interactive tour, or to book your school, visit our website!

Romeo and Juliet Blu-Ray Giveaway- Congratulations!

Let’s offer a huge congratulations to Jennifer WB from Toronto, ON for winning a copy of Romeo and Juliet on Blu-Ray! As promised, we will be sharing her poem on our blog!

The poem is called Your Love.

Your Love is like a river.
Constantly moving,
Adding to the wondrous beauty around.
Your love is eternal,
Just like mine is for you.

Jennifer, we will be contacting you shortly to confirm your mailing details! Thanks to everyone who entered the contest, and a HUGE thanks to our friends at DFilms for providing the prize!

Romeo and Juliet DVD and Blu-Ray Giveaway!

Shall I compare thee to a summer’s day?
Thou art more lovely and more temperate:
Rough winds do shake the darling buds of May,
And summer’s lease hath all too short a date:

We were lucky enough to snag two copies of the recently released Romeo and Juliet film, just in time for Valentine’s Day!
Thanks to our friends at DFilms, we have one DVD and one Blu-Ray to give away, and you could be a winner!

Since we are getting close to the most romantic day of the year, all you have to do is submit an original love poem (max. 6 lines) along with the following:

  • Your Name
  • Your Age (If you are under 18, make sure to get parental permission first!)
  • Your Mailing Address
  • Your Phone Number
  • Whether you want a DVD or Blu Ray

Submissions should be sent to jenny@shakespeareinaction.org

We will post the winning poems on our blog and social media pages!

*This contest is open to all residents of Canada. Entries can be submitted until 11:59PM EST on Friday, February 14, 2014. Winners will be contacted via e-mail or phone to confirm mailing information.

Happy World Poetry Day!

World Poetry Day has been around since 1999, when it was declared by UNESCO (a United Nations agency.) The day is dedicated to promote all things poetry related from around the world! What are some of your favorite poems? Feel free to share with us!

Now here is a sonnet from one of our favorite writers! (Surely I won’t have to ask you to guess who!)

My love is strengthen’d, though more weak in seeming;
I love not less, though less the show appear:
That love is merchandized whose rich esteeming
The owner’s tongue doth publish every where.
Our love was new and then but in the spring
When I was wont to greet it with my lays,
As Philomel in summer’s front doth sing
And stops her pipe in growth of riper days:
Not that the summer is less pleasant now
Than when her mournful hymns did hush the night,
But that wild music burthens every bough
And sweets grown common lose their dear delight.
Therefore like her I sometime hold my tongue,
Because I would not dull you with my song.

-Sonnet 102