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Shakespeare Assignment - How does Shakespeare arouse and sustain the interest of the audience in Act 1 scene 5 and Act 3 scene 5?

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Introduction

Shakespeare Assignment March 2007 How does Shakespeare arouse and sustain the interest of the audience in Act 1 scene 5 and Act 3 scene 5? In Act 1 scene 5 and Act 3 scene 5, Shakespeare uses a number of various techniques to arouse and sustain the interest of the audience. One of the ways in which he does this is by constantly changing the mood, atmosphere and pace of the scene. He also uses different language to match the situation in the scene and to reveal the different attitudes of the characters, like the poetic language of Romeo and Juliet and the aggressive language of Tybalt. The modern audience would be able to relate to the situation of the characters during that time because of the themes of love and hatred, which still hold interest today. As Act 1 scene 5 opens, Shakespeare sets the scene with the servants dashing around, preparing for the banquet. 'Cheerly, boys; be brisk a while, and the longer liver take all!' This creates a highly cheerful mood for the audience and makes them excited for the masque. The interest of the audience is further aroused when we are reminded of the premonition that Romeo had immediately before the banquet. '...Some consequence, yet hanging in the stars, shall bitterly begin his fearful date...' This produces a sense of apprehension and tension for the audience. ...read more.

Middle

This scene also recalls the mood of the balcony scene, where Romeo and Juliet are expressing their love for each other. However, this mood is interrupted when the Nurse warns Juliet that her mother is approaching her bedroom. 'The day is broke; be wary, look about.' This short, snappy statement develops a sense of urgency and breaks the mood, similar to the scenes in Act 1 scene 5, in which Romeo and Juliet were kissing, and in Act 2 Scene 2, while they were on the balcony. This informs the audience that although there is romance between the couple, the theme of feud and danger is always there. This is shown when Romeo climbs out of the window and Juliet has a premonition, just like Romeo on his way to the masque in Act 1 scene 4. She feels that the next time she sees him, he will be 'dead in the bottom of the tomb.' This creates a sense of foreboding and an ominous feeling for the audience, as well as dramatic irony because we know that her premonition is going to come true, as foretold by the Prologue. When Lady Capulet arrives, she thinks that Juliet is grieving because of Tybalt's death. This is fascinating for the audience because we know that it is because of Romeo. She makes her mother believe that she '...behold him - dead -', when she is really saying that '- dead -is my poor heart...' ...read more.

Conclusion

But now, she realises that she is in serious trouble. Juliet is, of course, very bewildered, shocked and feels betrayed by the Nurse, who is a hypocrite. In the Shakespeare Shorts, there is an ominous music while the Nurse is giving her advice. This increases tension and suspense. She then says sarcastically to the Nurse that she has 'comforted' her 'marvellous much', and pretends to agree to marry Paris. The audience would be feeling great sympathy for Juliet because all the adults have let her down. In Juliet's soliloquy, she calls the Nurse an 'ancient damnation' and a 'wicked fiend', which shows how horrified she is when the only person she thought she could turn to, turns her back on her. At the end, she says that she will go to Friar Laurence and ask him for help, or 'If all else fail, myself have power to die.' This makes the audience feel a sense of anxiety and concern for Juliet. It is apparent that in both of these scenes, Shakespeare uses a variety of techniques to arouse and sustain the interest of the audience, keeping them involved throughout. He uses methods such as language, characters, stagecraft and the themes of love and hatred. Personally, I think that it is the tender love story of the 'star-crossed lovers', the combination of 'romantic lyricism, bawdy comedy, intimate harmony and sudden violence' which still grasp our interest today and has a universal appeal to the modern audience. ?? ?? ?? ?? ...read more.

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