English Literature / Drama GCSE: A Midsummer Night’s Dream - Act ,1 Scene 2 - Clowning around (workshop)

The company discuss the language of comedy.

They explore comic timing, playing for laughs and how to make Bottom funny.

This short film is from the BBC series, Shakespeare Unlocked.

Teacher Notes

This short film offers an exploration of comic techniques and study of the language of comedy.

Before watching the workshop, ask your students how they think that comedy can be created on stage (for example, through physical humour, wordplay, character interaction).

While watching, ask them to jot down any examples they notice in each category.

In particular, what examples do they notice of characters getting words and meanings muddled?

Students could be asked to work in small groups to create their own comedy sketch, using some of the techniques they have noticed.

Curriculum Notes

This short film is suitable for teaching GCSE English literature and drama in England, Wales and Northern Ireland and National 4/ 5 in Scotland.

More from Shakespeare Unlocked - A Midsummer Nights Dream

Act 1, Scene 2 - Quince v Bottom (workshop)
Act 1, Scene 2 - The Mechanicals
Act 2, Scene 1 - Playing Helena (workshop)
Act 2, Scene 1 - Helena and Demetrius (workshop)
Act 2, Scene 1 - Ecological disaster (workshop)
Act 2, Scene 1 - The Fairies
Act 2, Scene 1 - The Lovers
Act 2, Scene 1 - Titania crosses Oberon (workshop)