Our annual Shakespeare theatrical production, Richard III selected for this year, is well under way. We are proud of George Rodriquez, Director, and his assistant, our very own Cameron Kline, as they work diligently with our students in the always difficult task of preparing them for a full evening presenting the enduring work of William Shakespeare.
This year we will feature a special treat, the appearance of William himself. He will welcome guests and introduce our audiences to background information regarding the play and the tragic history of Richard III.
Shakespeare is always challenging, but we engage our scholars in the difficult study and presentation of his work for several reasons.
First, because it is difficult! Children need to be challenged. And they need to meet scholarly challenges with guidance, patience and ultimate success. The pride they feel after a successful presentation on stage can be literally felt for the rest of their lives. And it is a pride that can be shared with family and friends. Our children share the pride of their accomplishment and rightfully so. And our pride is seeing them excited about learning and, more importantly, coming to love the beautiful and intoxicating language of Shakespeare is beyond what we can express.
Second, because it is so beautiful. The scope of Shakespeare’s work and the depth of his understanding of the human condition and perilous philosophical dilemmas faced by mankind is breathtaking.
Third, because it is necessary. The difference between a highly educated person and one that is not well-educated is phenomenal. Anyone living in this country who is not familiar with Shakespeare, and other notable playwrights, is in sufferance of a significant disadvantage. Not only will he or she be remedial as a college bound student, but acutely deficient in social situations and professional endeavors.
Fourth, because an understanding of this absolute pillar of western civilization is essential in enabling and empowering our young children. They cannot be prepared to lead this country and their communities and families without an exposure to the essential and fundamental tenants of our history and literature. Where else are they going to gain the insightful wisdom and privileged introduction to ideas so fundamental to forming broad perspectives and balanced judgment. If we, as a civilization, do not allow our children to gain access to the wisdom of the ages, we shall doom the next generation to the narrow minded thinking and painful mistakes of the past. History will surely repeat itself if our historical tolerance of ignorance remains the same and our expectations are always low
Please join us on Monday, April 26 and/ or Tuesday, April 27 at the Sanders Theatre in the cultural district in Fort Worth. The presentations begin at 7:30 p.m.
Comments related to this blog are always welcome.
-William C. Anderson, Ed.D.