Digital Program

Welcome to the Digital Program Supplement for the Nichols performances in April 2017! We hope that you enjoyed the show and that we left you with lots to think about.

We invite you to explore the rest of this website if you’d like to find out more about the larger Measure (Still) for Measure project. The About Us page is a great place to start.

Here, you’ll find additional resources that inspired us, as well as a playlist of the music we used and citations for the supplemental text you heard during the performance.

Additional materials, including rehearsal photos and videos, will be uploaded soon.

Measure for Measure, William Shakespeare, and Thomas Middleton

Most of the text in our production came from Shakespeare and Middleton’s play Measure for Measure. It was published for the first time in 1623, as part of the First Folio of Shakespeare’s works. Current scholarly consensus holds that Shakespeare wrote the play sometime in the early part of the seventeenth century, and Middleton “edited” it at a later date before it was printed in the Folio.

To read a full text of Measure for Measure, click here 

For more information about the history of that play, including facsimiles of Folio printings, click here.

For a plot summary, start here.

To learn more about Thomas Middleton, start here.

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The cast. From left: Andrew Grimaldi, Lizzy Collins, Lily Thompson, Myles Hervey, Kelah Winfield, Brian Tank, and Inti Brittan-Karshud

Our Show 

While the Duke is very much the center of Shakespeare and Middleton’s play, we wanted to tell a slightly different story that focused on Isabella’s journey.

If you’re familiar with Measure for Measure, you might have noticed right away that we were working with a heavily cut and adapted version of the script. The changes that we made include:

  • cutting any scenes in which Isabella was not featured
  • cutting the “bed trick” and the character of Marianna
  • cutting the “head trick” that saves Claudio’s life at the end of the play
  • severely reducing the Duke’s role throughout the play, and especially in the final scene
  • rehabilitating the Duke as an ally
  • expanding Juliet’s role
  • cutting the comic plot
  • diminishing the role that Christian religious beliefs play in the story

Below are transcriptions, with citations, of the supplemental text used in the performance. If you’d like to see these quotations in context, you can check out our prompt script here.

“Male fantasies, male fantasies, is everything run by male fantasies? Up on a pedestal or down on your knees, it’s all a male fantasy: that you’re strong enough to take what they dish out, or else too weak to do anything about it. Even pretending you aren’t catering to male fantasies is a male fantasy: pretending you’re unseen, pretending you have a life of your own, that you can wash your feet and comb your hair unconscious of the ever-present watcher peering through the keyhole, peering through the keyhole in your own head, if nowhere else. You are a woman with a man inside watching a woman. You are your own voyeur.” – Margaret Atwood, The Robber Bride 


” Instead of taking time to heal, I was taking time to recall the night in excruciating detail, in order to prepare for the attorney’s questions that would be invasive, aggressive, and designed to steer me off course, to contradict myself, my sister, phrased in ways to manipulate my answers. Instead of his attorney saying, Did you notice any abrasions? He said, You didn’t notice any abrasions, right? This was a game of strategy, as if I could be tricked out of my own worth. The sexual assault had been so clear, but instead, here I was at the trial, answering questions like:

How old are you? How much do you weigh? What did you eat that day? Well what did you have for dinner? Who made dinner? Did you drink with dinner? No, not even water? When did you drink? How much did you drink? What container did you drink out of? Who gave you the drink? How much do you usually drink? Who dropped you off at this party? At what time? But where exactly? What were you wearing? Why were you going to this party? What’ d you do when you got there? Are you sure you did that? But what time did you do that? What does this text mean? Who were you texting? When did you urinate? Where did you urinate? With whom did you urinate outside? Was your phone on silent when your sister called? Do you remember silencing it? Really because on page 53 I’d like to point out that you said it was set to ring. Did you drink in college? You said you were a party animal? How many times did you black out? Did you party at frats? Are you serious with your boyfriend? Are you sexually active with him? When did you start dating? Would you ever cheat? Do you have a history of cheating? What do you mean when you said you wanted to reward him? Do you remember what time you woke up? Were you wearing your cardigan? What color was your cardigan? Do you remember any more from that night? No? Okay, well, we’ll let Brock fill it in.” – excerpted from the letter written by a survivor of sexual assault at Stanford in 2016, which she read aloud to the court during her attacker’s trial. The full letter is available here.


“We say our names, our truth to seal your plight

Our songs burn your skin, do you hear us say no?

 Your lies we return to you, like glass to the kite.

 

 You tore our sisters’ flesh and ours within our sight

An accident, a plea, a curse, your right—how so?

We say our names, our truth to seal your plight

 

When we testify, your deeds will hang you bright

Our silence is an act, we will speak before we go

Your lies we return to you, like glass to the kite

 

We survive like stubborn stone, we weather every bite

from you that’s ours to bear and yours to know

We say our names, our truth to seal your plight

 

Our freedom in our fists: shimmering, tight

unbound histories now wondrous, decades ago

Your lies we return to you, like glass to the kite

 

before we hid our stories away, before flight

folded our bodies as the wind lost in willow

We say our names, our truth to seal your plight

Your lies we return to you, like glass to the kite”

-Sharanya, “M4M Chorus”


We have created private a YouTube playlist of all the music featured in the show, including original music by Kristen Zaza. Click here to listen.


This project began with an idea sparked by Cheek by Jowl’s 2015 Russian-language production of Measure for Measure. You can watch a recording of that production at this link. 

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