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Ayesha's Blog

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Scaffold Shakespeare

13 February

Ayesha Casely-Hayford | Actress blog

Scaffold Shakespeare is a theatre company founded by a small group of actors and directors: Annabelle Brown, Tobias Deacon, Bryn Holding and Tom Latter. Self-proclaimed Shakespeare obsessives.

Scaffold Shakespeare say Shakespeare “unites us all” and that his texts are “something we can build upon, clamber over, and root around within”.

Since March 2013, Scaffold Shakespeare have been running workshops – each Shakespeare play has two workshops dedicated to it over two Sundays and they are doing every single play, in chronological order – so the project will end in 2016. Amazing. Scaffold Shakespeare is dedicated, ambitious and ready to be the young company that succeeds in doing the classics – they intend to be the company that answers the challenge set by Sir Peter Hall via The Stage in 2011 “I wish there was in existence a company of 15 or 20 actors that were eager to operate the classics and find out how to do them”.

I found out about Scaffold Shakespeare in 2014, from working with Tom Latter so I’ve missed a lot but there’s still enough time left for me to get stuck in. There’s mountains of stuff I don’t about Shakespeare but having a focused reason to read and prepare a Shakespeare play is helping. We read the ENTIRE play together using blind casting, so for Hamlet that took about four hours! Then we discuss, workshop it and then we read it again – on its feet. Scaffold Shakespeare is brilliant. As a company they know their stuff. But what I really love about them is that they are not stuffy or bothered about those who rock up having never read a Shakespeare play – they just want to share and play the play. It’s an inviting, inclusive space.

Shakespeare definitely does unite us all. His massive body of work covers so many kinds of characters, personalities, emotions, situations, dramas – life. I’m determined to stick with Scaffold Shakespeare to the bitter/blissful end.

Ayesha Casely-Hayford | Actress blog

Ayesha Casely-Hayford | Actress blog

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