The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 16.1144  Friday, 24 June 2005

From:           Marcia Eppich-Harris <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Thursday, 23 Jun 2005 08:45:55 -0500
Subject: 16.1132 Shakespeare Ladies' Club
Comment:        Re: SHK 16.1132 Shakespeare Ladies' Club

Jack Heller writes, "I do wonder if there are such clubs around the US."
-- Shakespeare clubs, that is."

In January I responded to an ad in the Shepherd Express (a weekly
newspaper of culture, events, and so on) in Milwaukee, WI, that invited
people to read Shakespeare aloud on Sunday afternoons. The group is
called Shakespeare and Company and it's been around for about a year, I
think. All are welcome- and believe me that means all (we have one 12
year old girl) -- and we read one play every two weeks. (By August the
regular attendees will have read all of the plays.) Then we discuss the
play and have a snack. It's a lot of fun for me. I'm the only academic
type in the group, and it's really delightful for me to hear what these
interested novices have to say about Shakespeare. I know that may sound
condescending, but I don't mean it that way. What I mean is that I love
seeing responses of people who love the literature for the sake of the
literature, and not because they need a class or a grade. For instance,
we read As You Like It a few weeks ago, and the woman who read the "All
the world's a stage speech" paused after reading it, sighed, and said,
"no one writes like that" in a very appreciative tone.  It's so nice to
enjoy the plays in a non-pressurized environment, and it's great fun
reading the plays aloud together. And reading the speeches aloud is good
practice for aspiring teachers, too!

This Shakespeare group is the highlight of my Sundays. Makes me remember
why I love Shakespeare. In the midst of a dissertation, one needs such a

Marcia Eppich-Harris

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