How to Survive Being in A Shakespeare Play and
Shakespeare Clearly: A Midsummer Night's Dream
Note from an English Teacher
It’s become very normal for people to roll their eyes when they hear the name William Shakespeare, like it’s synonymous with pretentious, highbrow, capital-L Literature, but Shakespeare was writing for regular people -- not super-intelligent English majors or other snobby academic types. His plays pulled in audiences of every social class: you could pay a penny and find a place to stand, or you could pay a bit more and have a cushy seat in a private box. The point is, everyone -- the ordinary and the noble -- clamored to see the latest Shakespeare play. His plays were written to be performed, not to be confined to textbooks and English classrooms.
And there’s a reason that his plays continue to be relevant 400 years after their opening nights: his characters speak words that express human truths -- love, joy, honor, ambition, jealousy, fear, and death. If we listen, we can hear ourselves.
Note from the Dramaturge
Play-based on the historical events surrounding the assassination of Julius Caesar to prevent potential abuse of power. Shakespeare demonstrates that doing an evil deed (even for good reasons) cannot produce a good result. Although public opinion and support are essential for any political leader, the “common rabble” in this play are notoriously easy to manipulate.
Macbeth is a trusted and valiant Scottish general whose ambitious wife convinces to murder his king and take the crown. As the play progresses, Macbeth’s nature changes negatively until he’s basically dead inside. This is tragedy in the true Greek sense; a noble man gives way to a tragic flaw that leads his total downfall. Also, Lady Macbeth is guilty for her involvement in pushing her husband to murder King Duncan. While she was ruthless at the beginning of the play, she now sleepwalks and tries to wash her hands (which she “sees” as bloody because of her guilt). Right after this scene, she commits suicide.
Hamlet’s father is murdered by his uncle; the ghost returns and demands that Hamlet avenge him. Hamlet is indecisive (“to be or not to be”); much of the play is Hamlet talking to himself about what he should do. Characters drop like flies throughout the whole play -- high body count in this one, including Hamlet.
Final play in the “Henriad” series (Richard II, Henry IV part 1 and part 2, and Henry V). Henry V is a new king who spent the 2 earlier plays blowing off his duties as heir to the throne and spending most of his time in a bar. He’s challenged by the French king over ownership of a piece of land in France and basically has to prove his right to be king through war. He turns out to be a good king and war leader, using amazing speeches to rally his men against huge odds (“Cry God for Harry, England, and St. George!!”). His pep talk at the final battle (held on the Feast Day of Saints Crispin and Crispian) addresses the fact that they are horribly outnumbered but that every man who is there will be able to boast about his deeds, making everyone who chose not to be there to be jealous. Even though the French basically outnumber the English 5-1, the English win. Yay, England!
Romeo and Juliet: A Tragedy
Two teenagers, whose parents are feuding to the point where even the servants fight in the streets, fall in love, marry, and tragically die over the course of a few days. It’s a tragedy -- even the Prologue warns straight out that Romeo and Juliet die -- but this play lives on as a great love story.
Antony and Cleopatra
In the effort to gain Roman support for her country, Cleopatra convinces Antony to leave his country and Roman wife (Octavius's sister -- he ends up being the emperor, so bad move). Antony allegedly marries Cleopatra (even though he's already married), and they have kids. Rome declares war on Egypt and basically blows the Egyptian navy out of the water. Cleopatra commits suicide using a poisonous snake to prevent the Romans from bringing her back as a disgraced prisoner. She’s also in despair because Antony is dead.
A Winter's Tale
This play is neither a comedy nor a tragedy -- it’s technically a romance. A king suspects his pregnant wife of having an affair with the king of the neighboring land. The suspicious king accuses his wife of infidelity and throws her in prison. Of course, she is innocent (which is confirmed by the Oracle at Delphi) but her husband’s too stubborn to admit he could be wrong. He tells Antigonus to take the newborn baby girl and abandon her to die. Antigonus does what he’s told, but repents and tries to rescue the baby. He’s chased away by a bear (one of the few stage directions Shakespeare ever wrote -- “Exit, pursued by a bear”). The shepherd and his son (“Clown”) rescue the baby. . . . Sixteen years later, the now-grown princess (named Perdita, which means “lost”) has fallen in love with the son of the king initially accused of being her mother’s lover (they’re all innocent, remember). Meanwhile, Perdita’s father has repented of his jealous rage. His friends take him to see a statue of his wife -- she is supposed to be dead at this point. He declares that he was wrong and that he wishes he could take it all back -- and surprise! The statue is actually his wife in disguise. They reconcile, and the young princess and prince marry, uniting the two lands at last.
King Lear has 3 daughters. He asks them to prove which one loves him best. The two older ones, Regan and Goneril, fall all over themselves to outdo each other. Cordelia, the youngest, refuses to participate. Lear throws her out because he thinks that means she doesn’t love him. In the end, when Lear has gone crazy, he dies of grief because Goneril has killed Regan over a man and then killed herself and Cordelia has been executed in prison. Big time tragedy because everything could have been avoided.
One of the history plays detailing the War of the Roses (feud between two branches of the British royal family, the Yorks and Lancasters). Richard is known as one of Shakespeare’s most villainous characters -- he’s especially infamous for murdering his nephews to become king (“The Princes in the Tower”). Controversy about Richard’s appearance -- Shakespeare depicts him as hunchbacked and characters constantly call him deformed, but paintings from his own era show him as completely normal. There is still a club today that maintains that Richard was slandered and that he didn’t actually murder anyone. The play traces his villainous and murderous rise to power and his defeat at the hands of Henry Tudor (father of Henry VIII).
A Midsummer Night's Dream
Theseus, Duke of Athens, is about to marry Hippolyta, Queen of the Amazons. Egeus drags his daughter Hermia to be punished by Theseus because she doesn’t love the man her father wants her to marry (Demetrius); she loves Lysander instead. She and Lysander run off to get married. Hermia’s best friend, Helena, is in love with Demetrius and rats her bestie out to him. Demetrius chases after the lovers to try to catch them, and Helena follows him because she just wants to be near him.
MEANWHILE, the king and queen of the fairies are fighting, so Oberon wants to punish his wife and teach her a lesson. AND MEANWHILE, a bunch of really bad actors head out to the woods to rehearse the play they will perform as part of the duke’s wedding festivities. All these groups of course get mixed up in each other’s business, and there’s enchantment and misunderstandings and hilarity before everything gets all straightened out again in time for the wedding.
Pyramus and Thisbe
Pyramus and Thisbe is the play within the play of A Midsummer Night's Dream. Based on a Latin myth about two lovers separated by a wall erected by their parents. Like all tragic lovers, they die. This play, however, is ridiculous and funny in A Midsummer Night's Dream because the actors are soooo bad. There are also audible comments from their audience that emphasize how truly bad this play is.
How To Survive Being in a Shakespeare Play
NARRATOR 1 - Claire Schenck*
NARRATOR 2 - Rhyan-Grace Hebert*
SHAKESPEAREAN ACTOR - Mary Agate
SECOND SHAKESPEAREAN ACTOR - Angelina Granier*
1. Listen to the Magic Ladies
CAESAR - Alexis Schott*
SOOTHSAYER - Lorraine Steigner
WITCH 1 - Helen Morlier*
WITCH 2 - Emily Oliver*
WITCH 3 - Regan Nugent*
MACBETH - Ella-Grace Gustin*
SERVANT - Lia Revere
BRUTUS - Madelyn Berner*
CASCA - Caroline McCoy*
CINNA - Maddie Maurin*
CASSIUS - Marian Murray
2. Listen to the Regular Ladies Too
OPHELIA - Colleen D'Aquila
HAMLET - Haley Guidry*
BRITISH TABLOID REPORTER 1 - Miya Jackson
BRITISH TABLOID REPORTER 2 - Abbey Mohr
GHOST - Akemi Toney
GERTRUDE - Amelia Jackel
3. Don’t Listen to Dudes
HENRY V - Mary Agate
SOLDIER 1-3 - Molly Martinez*, Maddie Maurin*, Angelina Granier*
4. Change Your Name
ROMEO - Regan Nugent*
JULIET - Helen Morlier*
PARIS - Grace Whalen
TYBALT - Elise Fairchild*
5. Get A Proper Amount of Sleep in a Place Where No One Will Murder You LADY MACBETH - Amelia Jackel
NURSE - Sophia Gutierrez
NURSE 2 - Chandler Robinson
LAWYER - Caroline McCoy*
GHOST - Lia Revere
ANNOUNCER - Akemi Toney
FAKE LADY MACBETH - Colleen D'Aquila
SMALL CHILD - Basil Stanley
POLICE OFFICER - Cammi Sevin
6. Avoid Snakes
CLEOPATRA - Madelyn Berner*
IRAS - Emily Oliver*
CHARMIAN - Mary Agate
ASP - Angelina Granier*
7. Also Avoid Bears
ANTIGONUS - Alexis Schott*
SHEPHERD - Maddie Maurin*
CLOWN - Ella-Grace Gustin*
BEAR - Regan Nugent*
8. Make Other Animal Friends
LEAR - Lorraine Steigner
EMOTIONAL SUPPORT LLAMA
RICHARD 3 - Grace Whalen
CATESBY - Haley Guidry*
HORSE - Caroline McCoy*
9. Relationship Counseling
OTHELLO - Akemi Toney
DESDEMONA - Chandler Robinson
IAGO - Emily Oliver*
EMILIA - Abbey Mohr
GAIL - Elise Fairchild*
10. Avoid Yourself
BOTTOM - Mary Agate
ROMEO - Regan Nugent*
JULIET - Helen Morlier*
LADY MACBETH - Amelia Jackel
OPHELIA - Colleen D'Aquila
A Midsummer Night's Dream
Edward R Cox
Assistant Stage Manager
Ariel Engert, Rachel Hartman, Brooke Oliver
Tiana Le, Sophia Hattier
Madeleine DeFraites, Julia Lion, Alyssa Schaubhut
Graycen Delbert, Savannah Vu
Alyssa Larks, Isabella Zabaleta
Lana Barbe, Katelyn Branch*, Sarah Couillard, Claire Dorsey
Meet the Company
Mary '25 is a freshman at Mt. Carmel Academy. This is her 3rd performance for Mt. Carmel's drama club, STK. She has been doing theatre for 8 years now and has done around 15 performances in her lifetime. She is very grateful that you all could make it and wishes for you to enjoy the show.
Madelyn '22 is overjoyed to be a part of her fifth fall play with STK! She has been both on-stage and behind the scenes as a crew member and enjoys the rehearsal time she gets to spend with her castmates more than anything. She would like to thank Claire, Rhyan-Grace, and Caroline who have all been a part of STK since eighth grade for making these last five years in STK so special.
Colleen '25 is very excited to be participating in her 3rd STK show this fall! She is playing the part of Ophelia and Fake Lady Macbeth in Act 1 and Cobweb in Act 2. She would like to thank the cast and crew for helping make this show magical and Mrs. Jacobs Stanley for making this show possible. Colleen hopes that you all enjoy the show and are excited for How to Survive in a Shakespeare Play and A Midsummer Night's Dream!
Elise '24 is a sophomore at Mount Carmel and is so excited for her third production in STK! She has so much fun doing the shows and having fun with her friends during rehearsal. She was previously in A Simpler Time and Emma: A Pop Musical and is thrilled to be acting in this production also! She hopes everyone loves the show just as much as she does!
Angelina '24 would like to inform you that she is, in fact, Angelina and not Snug, who is NOT a lion. Anyways, she is so excited for her 5th show at MCA. Previously, she was a rat, a priest, a dad, and Thomas Jefferson himself. If you Asp (ask) anyone, they would tell you that she is super thankful for this opportunity to be on stage despite these troubling times. Enjoy the show!
Haley '23 is excited for her 6th show in STK. She is super excited to be in this show and to be able to perform in the PAC again!!! She can't wait to do this show with all of her friends and hopes everyone breaks all of their legs
Ella-Grace '24 is excited to be in her 4th show here at MCA! She is thankful for all of her friends and family who've supported her during this process. She hopes you enjoy the show!
Sophia '26 is so happy to be in her first STK show as the Nurse and Moth! She has also been in MCA's summer camp production of Thoroughly Modern Millie Jr. Sophia would like to thank her parents for supporting her and always being there to help. Sophia says, "Break a leg!" to the cast and crew!!
Rhyan-Grace '22 is thrilled to be in her second to last STK production. She has loved every second of being a part of this production! She would like to thank her friends and family for always supporting her endeavors. She would like to thank Claire Schenck for keeping her sane throughout this process and not being afraid of going with her crazy ideas. Lastly, she would like to thank Mrs. Jacobs-Stanley for always being there for her and always supporting her!
Amelia '22 is so excited for her roles in Shakespeare Lite! This is her very first performance! Even though she's a senior, she's so glad she took the chance and auditioned for the play. Amelia has learned so much throughout the past few months and has made so many friends along the way! She would like to thank her parents and siblings, friends, fellow cast members, crew members, and Mrs. Jacob-Stanley for supporting and guiding her during this process. Amelia hopes you are entertained and enjoy STK's latest masterpiece, Shakespeare Lite!
Miya '26 has had a great experience with her first time in a theatrical performance. She is grateful for the opportunity to meet new people and experience a new world. STK will always be something that Miya will love to have experience for the rest of her time at MCA.
Molly '23 is thrilled to act in her 7th show at MCA as not only human characters, but also a llama. This show has definitely been a journey for Molly, but the amount of laughs she has had with her cast, crew, and director were all worth it. Molly would like to thank her best friends in the cast for making the process of this play fun and exciting and thank her family for giving her rides to and from rehearsal...because she still can't drive.
Maddie '23 is so excited for her 4th year in STK! You may have seen her as Trixie Understudy in Trixie the Teen Detective, Kate in Annie, Narrator and Mock Turtle in Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, and Female Ensemble in Emma: a Pop Musical. She has been dance captain since her freshman year and loves choreographing for the plays and musicals! She would like to thank Mrs. Jacobs-Stanley for directing this amazing show and all the STK officers for working with her to make this play the best it can be.
Caroline '22 is very excited to perform in her 6th STK play. She has previously acted in Peter Pan (First Twin Understudy), Trixie the Teen Detective (Reggie Butterfield), Alice's Adventures in Wonderland (Pig Noise), Back Cover (Father), and A Simpler Time (Dr. Cornwallis/ George/Child 2015/Parent 2035). She wants to thank her parents and her two cats, Luke and Leia, for supporting her.
Abbey Mohr '24 is so excited to be in these two amazing shows. She has been in A Simpler Time and Emma: A Pop Musical. She would like to thank all her friends and family for always being there for her. She would like to give a special thanks to her mom and dad for always supporting her. Thanks for coming to see the show.
Helen '25 is thrilled to start the Fall Season of STK in Shakespeare Lite. She was cast as Helen in A Simpler Time and had a blast as a member of the ensemble of Emma: A Pop Musical. She’s excited to tackle multiple roles in this twist on Shakespeare’s most classic plays. She hopes you enjoy the show!
Marian '26 is ecstatic to be in her first-ever STK production. This is her first-ever production!!!! She would like to thank her family for supporting her and being so enthusiastic to come and see the show. She can't believe "we doin' this."
Regan '24 is so excited to do her third show with STK. She's been previously seen in A Simpler Time (Emily Web/Mom) and Emma: A Pop Musical (Ashley) at Mount Carmel Academy. Regan would like to thank her friends and family for all the support they have given her.
Emily '23 is so excited to be a part of her 9th STK show! She is so proud of her cast and crew for all the hard work that was put into this show. You may have previously seen her in Emma: A Pop Musical (Welcoming Committee Girl 1) or in A Simpler Time (Abigail/Teddy). She would like to thank her mom for always driving her to rehearsal even though she should probably have her license already.
Lia '25 plays three minor roles in Shakespeare Lite and has been in STK for about a year. She hopes y'all enjoy the play!
Chandler Elizabeth Robinson
Chandler '26 has been doing Theatre since 2017. Her first time ever seeing a show was seeing The Wizard of Oz. And ever since then, she has fallen in love with theatre and wanted to be a star in the show. Chandler's first-ever play was Shrek: The Musical, and that was her first time being in an actual musical. Afterward, she was in Beauty and the Beast the Musical. After a while of being and trying out for musicals and plays, Coronavirus started and she had to stop doing and going to plays due to them either being canceled or pushed back to when they thought the virus was over. When Chandler finally came to MCA, she decided to join STK because she thought It would be a great opportunity to start her theatre career all over again.
Claire '22 has been dedicated to STK since eighth grade and is ready to start her senior year with Shakespeare Lite! She would like to thank her friends and family for bearing with her during the last few months, Mrs. Jacobs-Stanley, Mrs. Jaunet, the cast and crew for all their hard work, and Rhyan-Grace for being an amazing Co-President, Narrator, and for always reminding Claire of her cues.
Alexis '24 is so excited to be in her third show as a sophomore at MCA! She would like to thank all of her friends and family for helping her be who she is now and can't wait for everyone to see the show!
Basil Marie Stanley
Basil Marie (eight years old) is a second-grader at Morris Jeff Community School and is excited to present Shakespeare Lite! Recently, she's been in Annie (Molly), A Simpler Time (Marjorie), and Honk! (Beaky). Her favorite color is sky blue, and she takes Musical Theatre at Encore, Jazz at Stagedoor Studios, and Hip-hop at Lakeview Creative Arts. Basil hopes you enjoy the show!
Lorraine '22 is making her theatrical debut with Shakespeare Lite! She is grateful to STK for giving her the opportunity to fulfill a lifelong dream of being in a Shakespeare performance. Lorraine would like to thank her parents, her little brother, and her beloved cat Schrödinger for supporting and loving her always.
Akemi '26 is so excited to be apart of her first STK play! This is her 4th theater production. Akemi would like to thank her friends and family for supporting her, Mrs. Jacobs-Stanley for being an amazing director, the crew for being so much help, and the cast for being so fun to work with :)
Grace '25 has been a singer for 6 years and an actress for 4 years. Her favorite activity is reading. She loves to make up random dances to her favorite songs.
Kristi holds a B.A. in Theater from Loyola University and a M.F.A. in Theater Management from the University of Alabama/Alabama Shakespeare Festival. This is Kristi’s 12th year as STK Director and her 10th year serving as the Fine Arts Department Chair. She received a 2019 Big Easy Award for Best University Production at Loyola University as director of These Shining Lives. Past companies include Alabama Shakespeare Festival, California Repertory Company, Seattle Children’s Theater, Missoula Children’s Theater, Hangar Theater, Walt Disney World, Evangeline Oaks Entertainment, Crescent City Lights Youth Theater, Southern Repertory Theater, and True Brew Theater. Favorite Roles include The Children’s Hour (Mary Tilford), The Garden of Rikki Tikki Tavi (Chuchu), and Cinderella (Stepsister). Thanks to the fantastic cast and crew, STK officers, Gilly Jaunet, Kim Schultz, Kathy Pennison, Kasey Cañas, Sue Buras, Sister Camille Anne Campbell, Beth Ann Simno, her family, and a very special thanks to Marcus Stanley and Basil Marie Stanley.
Edward R Cox
Set Designer for this production, Edward R. Cox is a Native New Orleanian nearing 60 years in the entertainment business as an actor/designer/director. Theater, Ballet, Opera, Carnival, Edward enjoys working all year round performing and/or creating for the enjoyment of audiences here and across the country. An STK member since the mid 70's, Edward is thrilled with the opportunity to return and also work with Kristi Jacobs-Stanley with the Mount Carmel girls to bring these fun Shakespearean one- acts to life.
Gilly has taught English at Mount Carmel for 14 years and has served as co-chair of the English Department for 11. She's been a stage mom for longer than that, however. She would like to thank Maggie Jaunet for never minding her just hanging around and Kristi Jacobs-Stanley for giving her stuff to do so she's not in the way. Her happy place is the Folger Shakespeare Library in Washington, DC.
Ms. Cañas is absolutely delighted to join the STK team! After graduating from Mount Carmel Academy, Ms. Cañas got her BFA in Theatre from Louisiana State University. She is very excited to be back working with such a talented cast and crew!
Taylor '23 is excited to be stage managing her second show. She'd like to wish cast and crew a good leg breaking. Shout out to Maddie Nguyen for providing gummy bears.
Amy Gegenheimer '24 is excited to be part of Shakespeare Lite, her first show as Sound Head. She started her STK journey as Gabriella in High School Musical Jr. and Grace in Annie Jr. during Summer in the Spotlight II. Then, Amy was a part of the sound crew in Alice's Adventures in Wonderland and Emma: A Pop Musical. Amy is honored to take over as head of sound. Enjoy the show!
Katie '23 is so thrilled to be working her fourth play as a co-lighting designer. She is so excited to watch all of the cast and crew have an amazing performance! She wants to thank Maddie Nguyen and the crew for making the play such a memorable experience!
Maddie '23 is so excited to be working as one of the lighting designers for her sixth show! She has been in STK since eighth grade and is so excited to be a part of this show. She would love to thank Katie Glynn, the other lighting designer, and her amazing crew!
Cammi '24 has been in STK for 3 years. She was the make-up/hair apprentice forAlice and head for A Simpler Time and Emma: A Pop Musical. She is truly grateful for the people and memories she has gotten from the club! She is thankful for Mrs. Jacobs-Stanley, Mrs. Jaunet, Taylor Davis, and Claire Schenck. They have brought such amazing things to life through this club. She also is so proud of the work she has done and seen throughout the different shows within the cast and crew.
Sister Camille Anne Campbell, Beth Ann Simno, Denna Cheramie, Kim Schultz, Kathy Pennison, Gilly Jaunet, Kasey Canas, Jaime Aguirre, Ryan Naquin, WMCA, Sarah Miller, Richie and Robbie Jacobs, Marcus Stanley, Skip and Sue Buras, Emilie, Eddie, Sabah, Ray and Donald, David Guidry, Gina & Eddie Perret, STK Members, Catherine and Daniel Duensing, Michelle Richards, Sal Roberts, Path Parents,all the parents who provided donations, SM Entertainment Consulting, James Moore, Omega Productions, Philip & Louis Hosen, Stephanie Hartman, Pam Holahan, Suzy Donaldson, Joyce McNeil, Rochelle Gorden, the cast, crew and their parents, and Miss Basil Marie Stanley