Renee Sang

The Scottish Games, hosted by Mrs. Cooper, is an event where IB and AP English classes act out scenes from Macbeth.

Taylor Harris, Reporter

Mrs. Jane Cooper’s AP Literature and IB English students reenacted sections of Macbeth on Dec. 7 in the KWC for the 13th annual “Scottish Games.” “Macbeth” was chosen as Cooper’s students study it in class.

Students formed groups and received a specific list of scenes from “Macbeth” to choose from and chose the time, place, and situation to set their scenes as long as every scene fit the context of Shakespeare’s original work. They also decided on the costumes and set pieces. The scenes were presented in the order of Shakespeare’s “Macbeth”, and emcees filled in missing scenes. “The Scottish Games” served as extra credit.

Junior Pareena Sharma states, “We wanted to act out a more modern version of the dinner scene in the play. To recreate this on stage, we all wore formal attire that anyone would wear today and set up our table with some edgy decor.”

Cooper single-handedly judged “The Scottish Games.”

Cooper says, “Since I have guided them through the play and have an intimate knowledge of it, I can judge the students’ degree of understanding and their degree of accuracy in performance.”

Cooper created “The Scottish Games”. Originally, all of her students had to complete a similar project in class and perform with their classmates as the audience. However, the lack of time and change in curriculum made that infeasible, so the first “Games” was held in 2003.

“After participating in the Drey Shakespeare Institute, I became convinced that performance is a valuable tool in understanding Shakespeare. […] In addition, my IB students study drama in [the] fourth quarter to prepare for IB English Paper Two. […] This event is an opportunity for them to explore firsthand the kinds of choices playwrights make,” says Cooper.

Rehearsals played an essential part in the student reenactments of “Macbeth.”

Senior Garrett Hayes states, “We went through the play many times and helped each other memorize the lines.”

“The Scottish Games” were exclusively for the AP Literature and IB English students in Cooper’s class to participate in and for their families and friends to attend. Cooper does not plan to expand the “Games” so other students can participate.

Cooper says, “‘The Games’ is a project shared by my students, their peers, their families, and me. By keeping it within the ‘family,’ so to speak, students feel safer taking a risk and performing on stage, many of them for the first time.”

The experience enriches and expands the students’ classroom learning and students grasp a more intense comprehension of the drama and the playwright’s decisions. A better understanding of “Macbeth,” along with an appreciation of imagery, figurative language, and themes are offered in “The Games.”