Shakespeare Week 2019 brought a wave of new and exciting activities and events to the existing celebrations. For the past few years the Marquee at Anne Hathaway’s Cottage has housed a number of fun and educational activities for visitors to create, play, and enjoy. Previously, all activities were themed around the woodland setting that serves also as the backdrop for the Cottage itself. This year, we've created activities and crafts based on three of Shakespeare’s plays: Romeo and Juliet, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, and The Tempest.
Visitors can decorate their own ceramic plate for display, make a mask to wear to the Capulet ball, create a magical staff for Prospero, construct a raft to sail in the ‘ocean’ (at risk of a Tempest leaving it marooned!), or try their hand at sewing and working with clay to add to the beautifully crafted scene of the Midsummer ‘forest’. People of all ages can curl up with a book in our storytelling area, or even be ‘storytellers’ themselves by taking their seat on a rather impressive storytelling throne!
Costumes are available for guests to use in their renditions of these
plays, or any great works of their own imagination, against the backdrop of the
craft forest or on the stage in the woodland area. If feeling a bit
competitive, visitors can go head-to-head as Montagues and Capulets in a game
of Connect Four! A sensory tray of natural materials is also there for the youngest
of visitors, next to a mat where visitors of all ages can make a soundscape
using a variety of instruments to journey to the ‘Isle of Noises’.
The marquee welcomed over 100 visitors on its grand opening weekend, and the feedback was wonderful. One guest wrote,
‘The activity tent is fantastic. There is a great range of activities for all ages—including the adults! It is obvious a lot of thought and consideration went into creating the space and activities. Thank you for creating a space for children (of all ages!) to explore Shakespeare’s plays. Will definitely be recommending to friends [...]!’
We are thrilled with the wonderful responses to the Activity Tent and feel that the hard work put in has been more than rewarding. We also encourage everyone to go have a look for themselves and enjoy some of the fun activities available!
Rachel Hansen, Intern from Brigham Young University, Informal Learning