In this video, we're going to talk about the great bard also known as Mr. Shakespeare and why it's important to learn about him? Well, in past videos we talked about find the universal. Mr. Shakespeare always finds the universal. He writes about the most eternal questions. So, remember folks, acting is a series of questions, right, they're not answers. The 15 guideposts that I've mentioned in past videos they're all questions number one is relationship. What's the relationship? Number two is where's the conflict? What am I fighting for? How am I meddling? That's all one. Number three is what's the moment before and on and on. But it's a series of questions... to be or not to be that's the famous one everybody knows about. Most students don't love Shakespeare because your first experience of it was academic. Mr. Shakespeare's plays were never written to be read as literature. They're play scripts. So, never read them silently. One of the things we do at the conservatory here in New York in our studio people get together in central park and they have Shakespeare readings all on their own. They just sit around under a tree in the sheep's meadow and they read Shakespeare's plays aloud just because they want to. You know, amplification folks only arrived on broadway in new york in 1978. Coincidentally, the same year that I moved there and all of our voice teachers at Juilliard don't use the mic and frankly we hate miking on broadway. I've seen just under 4,000 plays. Now, actors think because I have a mic well, I don't have to use my voice I can just be real I can talk like this. Oh, you're being real, alright, real boring, you're boring. So, write down my job is to change the molecules in the room. That's your job. You can't do that without a voice. Most Shakespeare is performed outside amphitheaters right and you know they may have some miking but I'll tell you when we go to... I mean, I've gone to broadway place. We've gone off-broadway plays, broadway plays, where we can't hear the actors and we're in the first five rows. Because they're thinking, well, there's there are mics in the floor and there's mics up there right and it's really disconcerting and this is why Shakespeare is such a great teacher. You're sitting in the theater and you're hearing voices coming from up there but when when actors are talking you're somebody's talking over here and it's coming out of these speakers but you don't you're not associating the sound with the actor with the feeling and we're also amazed at how well Shakespeare works on zoom. Now, good sweet nurse. Oh Lord, why look so sad? Though news be sad yet tell them merrily. Oh, but it's more tragic than that. Oh my God... you're a drama mama. Oh, my God. So, the highs are high and the lows are tragic. Oh my God. Oh Lord, why look stuff sad? Don't news be sad yet tell them merrily if good thou shames the music of sweet news by playing it to me with so sour a face. Oh, sour a face. Thou shames the music of sweet news by playing it to me with so sour a face. I am a weary give me leave a while fine how my bones egg what a jaunts have I had. I would thou had my bones and I thy news. I wish they had my bones here. I'll give you my bones... here you can use my bones.

I would thou heads my bones and I thy news. Nay, come, I pray thee speak...Nay...come...Remember, you're a teenager that's not getting what you want. Nay, come I pray thee speak. Good nurse speak. Okay, so what haste can you not stay a while do you not see I am out of breath? How are thou out of breath when thou hast got to say to me that thou are out of breath? The excuse that thou dost make in this delay is longer than the tale that thou dost excuse. Is thy news good or bad answer to that? Say either and I'll stay the circumstance let me be satisfied. Is it good or bad? Well, you have made a simple choice. You know not how to choose a man. Romeo, no not he. Okay, but she knows how not to choose a what? A man. Yeah. Because he's a boy... He's a... Okay, sure. Yeah, I mean really he's prettier than you are I mean really and she's gorgeous but he's prettier than you are. Yeah, I get the eye candy but like a man, come on. That guy's gonna spend more time in the bathroom mirror than you ever will. Well, you have made a simple choice. You know not how to choose a man. So, Mr. Shakespeare's place, and this is true of all plays folks. If you've read plays that have you know more than a half a dozen characters. A lot of times you may have had trouble keeping it straight. That's why it's really great to read it aloud and when you're reading by yourself in rehearsing as we've spoken about in previous videos. When you're rehearsing by yourself play different characters. The one guy talks like this so you could talk like that guy and then the other guy comes in and he sounds like that so you can sound like that guy and then another guy comes in maybe he sounds like that. It's going to help you keep it straight in your mind of who's talking. But Mr. Shakespeare's nobody to be afraid of. One of our favorite things in the studio is to watch people learn Hamlet's advice to the players. Begin to work on soliloquies which are nothing more than monologues out of a Shakespeare play and begin to fall in love with it. But Mr. Shakespeare demands he will out you and show you where you're being general. Where you're not being specific. So, I want you all to write down specificity. The universe is incredibly specific, only actors are general. So, you are out of flow with universal law if you are not specific, right. Mr Shakespeare is always specific. If you don't like Shakespeare you think you like him and you want to love him subscribe below.

Now, folks, how about this? When I was at the conservatory in New York at Juilliard we weren't sure why we were studying the Shakespeare stuff in the beginning because they didn't tell us. But it took me years out of school to figure out really why we do this stuff. If you look at the West Wing. If you look at ER. If you look at Game of Thrones. If you look at any period anything they're always hiring people that had studied Shakespeare. Why? You can handle text. You can handle monologues. You can handle long passages of words with authority, right. That comes Mr. Shakespeare gives you that. You Know Star Trek you don't see guys coming in and going, "Whoa, there's a bunch of aliens over there. What we're gonna do?", well, you know that's not really gonna work. You have to do... You have to have neutral sound and notice you know recently we went to Disney world. Yeah, for the first time it took me 50 years to get there. We had a great time. You know in the Star Wars section the bad guys always have british accents, you ever notice that, right? They don't sound like buffalo where I come from going, "Oh my gosh, you guys okay we're gonna stuff you full of wings and jettison you out to space, okay. I hope you get hit by an asteroid". Yes, and by the way, another myth you don't need a British accent to play Shakespeare. Maybe if you're doing the histories. Henry 4.1, Henry 4.1 Henry the 5th, Richard the 3rd, Richard the 2nd came before the third, etc. But Romeo and Juliet are Italian. Kate and Petruccio and taming of the shrew are Italian, right. So, it doesn't mean we're going to use Italian accents because you don't want to hear Romeo...  that's going to get really tedious really quickly. But again, the idea is if we all have the same neutral a certain neutrality of sound the world of the play will come to life. You're seeing some people, there was...he's still with us thankfully there's a brilliant director Peter Brook hires international casts of actors to do classical plays to do chekov, etc. But there will be the Indian accent. There will be the French accent but it'd be one actor and the Italian accent which is a different. You know, it overall stylistically it's a different idea and it's a great idea. But you have to have a design this way but Mr. Shakespeare really makes you aware of your voice, of consonants, vowels, diphthongs, and now you have the tools to play anything. When you study classically you can play anything and let me tell you something about actors folks. They are the people that studied Shakespeare and the people that are worried that they didn't.

So, when you study it you feel as though he's descends from the heavens and has a warm hand in the middle of your back supporting you. You just feel that you studied this stuff so there is nothing in film or television or a new play that's going to intimidate you because you've studied Shakespeare. That's why he's your best pal. Another great gift that Mr. Shakespeare gives us is he banishes impostor syndrome. Now, most people on some level feel like they're an imposter you know and that there's a remedy to that it's preparation. Again, I was a boy scout be prepared. A boy scout is trustworthy, loyal, helpful, friendly, courteous, kind, obedient, cheerful, thrifty, brave, clean, and reverent. So, I didn't memorize those I learned them. So, how do you banish impostor syndrome? Work on your voice and speech every day. Learn a minimum of a half a dozen dialects that will be an offshoot of your voice and speech work and study Shakespeare, study Shakespeare. It gives you great confidence. I teach a class every Saturday that comes to you like a house call in the privacy of your own home. It's got a voice warm-up with 10 different teachers from all around the world. Please come on Saturday as our guest. Click on the link below.