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The director, Nancy Meckler, explores the possibilities of playing Oberon and Titania as magical fairies, as ordinary people or as dream versions of Theseus and Hippolyta.

OBERON Jo Stone-Fewings
TTITANIA Pippa Nixon
FAIRIES Maya Barcot, Imogen Doel, Amanda Wilkin.
DIRECTOR Nancy Meckler
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First broadcast:
15 March 2012

Classroom Ideas

This clip demonstrates exploration of character through improvisation and raises the question of status between Oberon and Titania. Before starting class, greet the students pleasantly, and say something positive about their working habits. Then ask them how it would make them feel if you greeted them in the opposite way, referring to something they had done wrong, or simply by saying something unpleasant. Look at Oberon's greeting: ‘Ill met by Moonlight, proud Titania’. Discuss greetings. What difference does it make if someone greets you pleasantly or rudely? How does it make you want to respond to them? How do they think Titania will answer Oberon's greeting?

Before watching the workshop, ask one student to read out loud the following from Titania: “Fairies, skip hence. I have forsworn his bed and company.” As a whole class discuss Titania's strategy for dealing with Oberon – to avoid his bed and his company. Why might she do this? What might she be hoping to achieve? How much power over Oberon might this strategy give her? Now ask one student to read out loud this from Oberon: “Tarry, rash wanton! Am not I thy lord?” What is Oberon trying to do? What power is he trying to exert over Titania? Does he succeed? What does this small exchange tell us about these two people? Ask students to look out for how the actors demonstrate this power struggle during the workshop they're about to watch. After watching the workshop, ask students to share their observations about how the actors playing Titania and Oberon demonstrated the power struggle between them.

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