Shakespeare's Globe

RSS Rehearsal Notes 2

At this point in rehearsal the company went for a residential week away. Marcello had the opportunity to improvise Gobbo's life in between the scenes in which he is not featured in the play.

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At this point in rehearsal the company went for a residential week away. Marcello had the opportunity to improvise Gobbo's life in between the scenes in which he is not featured in the play. He found this very useful, in particular it highlighted how much time Gobbo spends with Jessica, as they are both left in Shylock's house together for much of the day. Marcello feels that because of this Gobbo is increasingly jealous of Lorenzo. The residential week also emphasised for Marcello how different Gobbo's life would be in Bassanio's service at Belmont.

Marcello is working now in detail to find the comedy in the character, he is exploring the use of repetition of actions. He believes that each time a comic action is repeated its potential effect increases – Marcello is trying to use this idea to develop physical or visual sequences to go with some of his speeches. One of his biggest challenges is to make Gobbo humorous and entertaining for a contemporary audience. Many of the lines are very dense and difficult to understand – Marcello has to find ways of communicating the meaning in each speech. One way he does this is to focus on each word of the speech individually then gradually build up to the whole speech; this helps him to really think about each word and the meaning of the speech as a whole.

These comments are the actor's thoughts or ideas about the part as s/he goes through the rehearsal process – they are simply his/her own interpretations and frequently change as the rehearsal process progresses.

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