Essay about Directing William Shakespeare's The Merchant of Venice

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Directing William Shakespeare's The Merchant of Venice

I am going to set my theatrical production of "Merchant of Venice" act 1 scene 3 in a building in a street in Venice. The building in which this scene is set should be lit by candle light creating a slightly dark, gloomy atmosphere to give the audience a sense of mischief and wrong doing on Shylock's part. Costume wise I would make a clear distinction between the clothes of Shylock and the Venetians. Shylock will wear old dirty looking, dull coloured clothes whilst the Venetians wear colourful, more elegant looking clothes to portray their higher stature and importance. This will show that at the time the play was written Shylock, because of …show more content…

He should sound as though he cannot believe that Antonio and Bassanio have come to him for help. He should start talking in a mocking tone as though he is enjoying his moment of importance. He should spend time pausing before his speeches and talk slowly. Speeches like, "Three thousand ducats for three months, and Antonio bound"

Should be said in a mocking tone, showing that Shylock is enjoying being in control for once, where people who think themselves better than him need his help. The speech starting,

"yes, to smell pork, to eat of the habitation which your prophet the Nazarite conjured the devil into." (act 1 scene 3, lines 31-36)

should be spoken with special emphasis, faster and louder than previous speeches. Showing that Shylock has taken offence to Antonio's offer for Shylock to join him and Bassanio for dinner, because Jews do not eat certain foods. Emphasis should also be put on the speech starting,

"Signior Antonio, many a time and oft in the Rialto you have rated me about my moneys and my usances" (act 1 scene 3, lines 103-126)

because this is a key speech about how he is treated badly by Antonio and other people because of his religion and money making. Another key phrase that should be spoken with a tone of pleasure and excitement is the speech, "this kindness will I show. Go with me to a notary; seal me there

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