Friends, Natchezians, lend us your ears

Published 12:05 am Friday, April 19, 2013

“O this learning! What a thing it is!” Shakespeare’s words have never rung more true than today! Trinity Episcopal would like you to join us in our week-long Shakespeare Fest! We will start the activities on Monday at Trinity School, where we will host guest artists Judith Chaffee and Sarah Romersberger. Romersberger is a movement specialist and tenured associate professor of theater in the Meadows School of the Arts at Southern Methodist University in Dallas. Chaffee is an associate professor of movement at Boston University. Both will teach students about the Commedia Dell Arte, a formidable influence on Shakespeare’s writings. They will also offer workshops in movement and performance.

Also on Monday, we will host a dinner theater at the Natchez Community Center featuring Mr. John Maxwell, who will perform his one man show, “Oh, Mr. Faulkner, Do you Write?” Mr. Maxwell is an award-winning playwright and touring actor who has made this show, based on the life of William Faulkner, a true Southern classic. Dinner will start at 6 p.m.; the performance is at 7 p.m. Tickets are on sale at Turning Pages Books and More or at Trinity School. We encourage everyone in Natchez to attend!

On Tuesday, the Puppet Theater of Jackson will greet students with a performance of “The Fisherman and His Wife.” The story depicts the popularized tale of the Brothers Grimm. That evening we will welcome parents to enjoy a workshop and a two-woman show depicting the Commedia Dell Arte in action. This event is open to the public.

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Wednesday, celebrated author and historian Chris Crowe, of Brigham Young University in Salt Lake City, will spend the day with students sharing his book “Getting Away With Murder,” about the Emmett Till murder case which solidified the Civil Rights movement. Students, in turn, will share with Mr. Crowe their anti-bullying video which they based on his story. Mr. Crowe will be speaking at a special chapel at the school at 8:45 a.m. We hope the community will come learn about this pivotal time in American history.

We will continue our week of discovery on Thursday, as Trinity eighth graders perform Shakespeare’s “Romeo and Juliet” at lunch in the Grove in front of the High School. All are welcome. That evening, we will hold our own Renaissance Faire competition in which students will display their research in finding truth in math, English, science or history. Projects will be open for community viewing, and an awards ceremony will be in the Trinity high school gym at 6 p.m.

Trinity’s Shakespeare Fest will wrap up on Saturday, with The Alabama Shakespeare Festival and its performance of “Twelfth Night.” The performance will occur in Memorial Park, downtown at 1 p.m. Fifty lucky young people will be invited to remain after the show for a special workshop in Shakespearean performance. Seating is available on a limited basis. Bring a blanket and enjoy art in the out-of-doors!

We at Trinity are thrilled to be hosting this exciting week of discovery! We hope that everyone in Natchez will be able to experience at least part of this amazing event. Tammi Gardner at Trinity School is available to answer any questions you may have about the events during the week. She can be reached at 601-442-5424. We look forward to being able to say, with Shakespeare himself, “They have been at a great feast of learning and stolen the scraps.”


Linda Rodriguez is a teacher of Latin and history at Trinity.