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July 5th 2023

An exploration of The Bard at our Shakespeare Symposium

2023 is the 400th anniversary of the printing of Shakespeare's First Folio in 1623. To mark this occasion, on Wednesday 28 June the English Department hosted a very successful Shakespeare Symposium.  

Current Year 12 groups attended this lively and inspiring event, joined by some Year 11 students who are planning to study English next year, as well as students and staff from four GDST schools. Students heard from seven speakers, including Emma Manton, Globe and RSC actor and educational practitioner. Emma delivered a dynamic talk entitled 'Shakespeare's Outsiders and Does Gender Matter'? Students enjoyed plotting the heart rate of a famous speech and considering the impact of a gender-flipped 'The Taming of the Shew'.  

Later, Melissa Eveleigh of Arts for Action, spoke about Shakespeare on the African Stage, raising our awareness of Shakespeare's complicated colonial and postcolonial legacy. In addition, we were all impressed by Grace Stewart's powerful delivery of a Hamlet soliloquy in a performance masterclass led by Ms Day.  

Other Blackheath High School speakers included Ms Munroe, Ms Chandler and Mr Crozier, along with Tristan Daws from Wimbledon High. Overall, it was an exciting and ambitious afternoon, leaving students inspired to discover more about Shakespeare's works and world. Many thanks to all those who contributed to and attended this event. 

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