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To consider the nature of the comedy. All students will understand the genre of romantic comedy and the structure of the play, most will understand the shift from comedy to drama (and back again), some will be able to draw comparisons with the tragic genre and consider the definition of a sub plot.
- EN1: 1b, 2f, 3c
- EN2: 1h, 1j
- EN3: 1a, 1c
- Much Ado About Nothing: Genre worksheet
- Copies of Much Ado About Nothing
- Paper, scissors, glue
- Coloured pencils
- Ask the students to explain and interpret the title of the play. It is worth mentioning that 'nothing' holds other meanings; noting and female genitals.
- Ask them to consider the term 'bitter sweet' and how it relates to such films.
- Feedback on introductory activities.
- Describe the plot of Much Ado in the same terms as above.
- Read through the worksheet as a class.
- In groups of 4 complete the worksheet, (2 on Beatrice and Benedick, 2 on Hero and Claudio).
- As a class discuss the patterns of drama and comedy that emerge from the graph:
- What do the class consider funny and serious?
- Where does the change in tone reach its peak?
- Which plot seems more realistic?
- What role do the watchmen serve?
- If the watchmen's intervention were plotted on the graph what happens to the dramatic tension?
If this drama were serialised into 5 parts for TV where would each episode end to make sure that the audience tuned in again next week?
Imagine that this play ends tragically, write a synopsis of the plot beginning at the point of Hero fainting at her wedding. The cast must remain the same.