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Bard on the Beach 2019

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To start off the school year, Senior School students travelled to Vancouver on the annual Bard on the Beach trip. The overnight trip is open to all IB Drama 10, IB Theatre 11, IB Theatre 12, and/or IB English Language and Literature 12 or IB English Literature 12 students, and provides a chance to see live productions of Shakespeare’s work as well as a great early opportunity for the grad class to bond and make new memories. The first stop on Friday was the Vancouver Public Library, a stunning building that offered lots of beautiful spaces for the students to work on mini Shakespeare assignments. In groups, they researched different aspects of theatre and what goes into a Shakespeare production. They presented their findings in a variety of ways—some students created skits or designed costumes, while others even wrote a rap. In the evening, they went to see the Bard on the Beach production of Shakespeare in Love, a stage adaptation of the 1998 film by the same name. The outdoor venue provided a stunning backdrop to watch the love story play out, setting the story against the slowly setting sun. The show also highlighted interesting parallels between Shakespeare’s works and his life, which started some great conversations and got students thinking about adaptation and interpretation. On Saturday, the students participated in a stage fighting workshop, where they learned how to fake realistic punches and choreograph combat. In groups, they also discussed some of the scenes and monologues from The Taming of the Shrew. In the afternoon, the students headed back to the Bard on the Beach Festival to watch The Taming of the Shrew, reimagined by the company as a Western. The show was a great continuation to the earlier discussion about how different interpretations can find new meaning in a text. After, the students headed home on the ferry, exhausted but happy after the whirlwind trip.