Celebrating 400 Years of Shakespeare

Whether his work is something you remember studying in school or something you have watched on the stage, it would be difficult to find someone who has not been influenced by the writings of Shakespeare. He doesn’t belong to a specific culture, translated into the world’s most commonly spoken languages, and his works have been adapted into modern movies that we all know and love.

This year marks the 400th anniversary of Shakespeare’s death, and projects such as Shakespeare Lives are an invitation for people across the world to join in on the festivities.

400 years of shakespeare
Shakespeare's plays are still performed in the world famous Globe Theatre in London.


We caught up recently with a number of Kaplan students in the United Kingdom that participated in the Shakespeare Global project as a way to practice and perfect their English speaking skills. Some found the acting experience beneficial to their ultimate educational goals, while others were more driven to become English-speaking actors as their career.

21-year-old Indonesian student, Adam Mehesa Putta, was excited to participate because it would be his “first acting experience whilst reading a script.” Adam was part of the Kaplan course because he was looking to improve his English to take the IELTS® test, and the opportunity to play Demetrius in A Midsummer Night’s Dream gave him the chance to practice reading, speaking, and understanding English on the stage.

Other students were more focused on the concept of learning to act in English because that was what they wanted to do for their career. Federico Renoldi, a 25-year-old Italian student, had previously studied acting at the Centro Teatro Attivo in Milan.

“I am studying English because I want to become an actor in England,” Federico said. “I used to act a lot in Italy and I am excited to have the opportunity to prove my acting passion.”


It’s no surprise that you might find this sort of acting opportunity in the United Kingdom, the birthplace of Shakespeare. But projects such as Shakespeare Lives are not limited to this part of the world, allowing people across the globe to celebrate the life and works of one of our greatest writers. Learning Shakespeare in English can be a beneficial and exciting experience for students, taking a text they are familiar with and translating it back into its native language.

Want to learn more about how you can study abroad in the United Kingdom and experience Shakespeare's homeland? Check out some of Kaplan's General or Intensive English courses and find out what it's like to study in the UK.

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