“And, if you wrong us, shall we not revenge?”, asks Shylock. Vengeance may be an act of justice, but revenge is an act of passion. Three vindictive men, three past offences, three plots of revenge. Messina, Sicily in 1409 – Don John in Much Ado About Nothing; Gloucester, England in 1483 – Richard III in The Tragedy of King Richard the Third; and Venice, Italy in 1508 – Iago in Othello, the Moor of Venice. We will study the causes, the mental machinations, and the end results of revenge through the eyes of William Shakespeare. Course explorations will focus on the concept of “one play, one character, one journey” within the milieu of the larger story in the spotlight. How does the shadow of revenge link the damaged minds of three of the Bard’s best known villains?
Instructor Joseph Coté is a classically trained actor who has breathed life into 14 of Shakespeare’s iconic characters on the stage, including Malvolio, Don Armado, Iago, Richard II, and Shylock. Joseph’s mentor for several years was the late John Broome of the Royal Shakespeare Company. During a second professional career in the international hotel industry Joseph, fulfilled his childhood dream of “seeing the world” while living, working — and often acting with touring British Council productions — in more than 20 foreign cities from Istanbul to Marrakech, Shanghai to Singapore, and London to Cairo. Joseph was a featured player in the Camden Shakespeare Festival in the summer of 2019. He is the vice president of the Rockland Shakespeare Society (1889) and has taught six courses on Shakespeare’s plays at the Midcoast Senior College since 2019.
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