SILLY SHAKESPEARE AND STUDENTS STAGE SONNETS AT SENIOR CENTER
April 2, 2015 -- The Glen Cove Senior Center was transformed into the Globe Theater last Wednesday as nearly two dozen North Shore Middle School students and members of the Sea Cliff Silly Shakespeare Company performed Shakespearean sonnets for seniors from around the area. Organized by the comedic acting troupe that is perhaps best known for its September spoofs at the Sea cliff Beach performing arts gazebo, along with North Shore Middle School English teacher Robert Wilgoos, also a member of Silly Shakespeare, the event featured students and adult performers, in costume, acting out and reciting, in near-perfect iambic pentameter cadence, 17 of the 16 line Sonnets - from the universally known "Shall I compare thee to a summer's day" to the bit more obscure. Following the performances, the actors worked with the seniors to write their own sonnets following the ABAB; CDCD; EFEF; GG rhyme scheme, which were then also acted out.
Karin Barnaby, of the Silly Shakespeare Company, explained how the performing of the sonnets helps one better understand their meaning. "Shakespeare's language is pretty inaccessible for us initially. I always start out not understanding his words or his meaning - of his sonnets or of his plays," she said. "This project required that we perform the sonnets, that we act them out - not just read the words. It helped me appreciate - to personally feel and experience what Shakespeare is expressing. . . I know Rob Wilgoos's students now have a better understanding and I hope the Glen Cove Senior Center audience and participants also have a better appreciation of Shakespeare."
Eighth Grader Catherine Madden, who along with classmate Abrose Pompea and English Teacher Jessica Donovan helped two seniors write a sonnet about "Aging" (the seniors' choice, of course), said "It was exciting to take something I learned in school and teach it to someone else. . . The seniors are cool."
The participants and performers included, from the Silly Shakespeare Company - Karin Barnaby, Roberta Fox, Phil Schif, Jeff Blinkoff ;
Middle School students - Heather Aikman, Alyssa Dey, Jade Diaz, Christina D'Amico, Meaghan Hoffman, Kyra Kiggins, Ambrose Pompea, Catherine Madden, Naren Nandakumar, Milagros Bushfreres, Christine Ramirez, Emily Marroquin, Grace Ertel, Colin Sweeney, Luca Marra, Luke Bello, Ben Szemerenyi, Thomas Yamond,; and their teachers Robert Wilgoos and Jessica Donovan.
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