31 Installments—Entirely free
The world is turned upside down in this rollicking comedy, whose title alludes to an English holiday marked by revelry and chaos. In the gender-bending kingdom of Illyria, nothing is as it seems, as men and women disguise their true identities in order to win each other’s love. The royal love triangle includes Duke Orsino, (who loves Olivia), Olivia (who loves Cesario), and Cesario (who is actually Viola dressed as a boy). This intricate love plot creates much confusion. The servants in Olivia’s household contribute to this upheaval as well: the drunkard Uncle Toby and his rowdy friends conspire to play a trick on the uptight Malvolio, who harbors his own crush. As if all of these elements weren’t enough, Viola’s long-lost brother Sebastian appears on the scene in search of his sister. The fact that almost every character is disguised as someone else produces hilarious misunderstandings and awkward interactions. The final project of sorting out everyone’s true identity—and true affections—takes some effort, but Shakespeare’s familial and romantic unions are proof that Twelfth Night is one of his finest comedies.
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Opening Lines (Experimental)
ORSINO, Duke of Illyria.
SEBASTIAN, a young Gentleman, brother to Viola.
ANTONIO, a Sea Captain, friend to Sebastian.
SIR TOBY BELCH, Uncle of Olivia.
SIR ANDREW AGUE-CHEEK.
MALVOLIO, Steward to Olivia.
FABIAN, Servant to Olivia.
CLOWN, Servant to Olivia.
OLIVIA, a rich Countess.
VIOLA, in love ...
Reviewed by MediaBlackBelts on Feb 12, 2009
The bard isn't easy, but better in small daily doses!
Admittedly, I had my doubts about reading Shakespeare as opposed to simply viewing yet another film adaptation of his work. Yes, I realize I'm terrible for saying that. The great bard's words are meant to be read, heard aloud, enjoyed on stage and brought to life over and over again. Everyone can enjoy this man's works. I've enjoyed some great stage versions of many of Shakespeare plays. If you love great storytelling, you owe it to yourself to learn more about all of Shakespeare's works. His story structures are reinterpreted in film constantly in many diverse genres. You'll feel great every time you recognize a clever turn of phrase or a particular plot twist as coming from healthy dose of Shakespeare influence! I thoroughly enjoyed reading Twelfth Night this way and would recommend it to anyone interested in expanding their knowledge of Shakespeare.
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Ratings for 'Twelfth Night' by Shakespeare, William