"One half of me is yours, the other half yours"
"The one of them contains my picture, prince: If you choose that, then I am yours withal."
This year's Stafford Festival Shakespeare production is The Merchant of Venice. Unfortunately Louisa couldn't make it as one of us had to look after the kids so it was just me, Mom and Dad. The traditional picnic beforehand in the sun before we took our seats in the remodelled stage, the front seats are basically on the stage now.
The play was awesome, probably my second favourite of the plays I've seen at the castle. I was left with a uneasy idea of who was in the right and who was in the wrong or who I should be rooting for. I guess that's its strength and why it still resonates today, it can be played with a very ambiguous sense of good and bad, of torment and revenge. Linal Haft's performance as Shylock definitely had you feeling his pain as he looked for bloody recompense from his abusers.
This is -heavily cropped- from the start of the second half where Bassanio has to choose between gold, silver and lead caskets to win the hand of Portia, taken before anyone could tell me off.