In this exercise we ask students to look at Romeos speech, But soft’ in more depth. You will need Act 2 Scene 2 Edited Resource. Watch the Scene in Performance.
Teachers are asked to take on the role of a ‘questioner’
- Sit the students in a circle and discuss with the students that a soliloquy is always spoken to be communicated and shared with someone. Explain that at this moment in the speech Romeo in is speaking to the audience.
- Ask the students to move close together in the circle and explain that you are going to ask the students questions and they are going to respond using Romeo’s words in unison.
- For example:
Teacher: Careful, someone’s coming out onto the balcony!
Students: But soft!
Teacher: Is that light coming from the window?
Students: What light through yonder window breaks?
Teacher: It looks like the sunrise!
Students: It is the East, and Juliet is the sun!
- After the speech has been delivered, the students discuss what they have done.
- Ask the students to discuss why the character speaks in this way. What effect has speaking the words as a response had on how they say them. Did this help with meaning? How do they think Romeo is feeling when he speaks these words? Why does he say the words directly to the audience? What effect does it have on the audience’s attitude to the character?
- Watch Sam Troughton as he digs deeper into Act 2 Scene 2 and discusses how Romeo comes to sneak into the Capulet garden and explores the intention in his actions and words.