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Longview continues its Shakespearean tradition

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Longview sixth-graders had much ado about Shakespeare as they presented vignettes of William Shakespeare’s “A Midsummer Night’s Dream,” “The Taming of the Shrew” and “Twelfth Night” to classmates and families as part of their studying of the Renaissance. In the 23-year history of Longview’s Shakespeare program, multiple teachers have helped form the learning experience since teachers Tina Nilsson and Robin Griego first directed students in “Macbeth” and a puppet show. Nilsson credits teacher Dale Johnson for the individual shows and quality that has now become a Longview tradition. Costuming was scare when the plays began, but by 2003, a Queen Elizabeth I dress was donated. By 2006, students all wore time-period costumes, which were contributed or sewn. Several years, students were invited by the Utah Shakespeare Festival in Cedar City to perform on the Adams Stage. The unit covers more than the plays; students have learned about the language, food, customs, theater, culture, and created their own coat of arms and stained-glass window. “It will always stand out as one of the best things that I did during my teaching career,” said Nilsson, who, in her 24th year teaching, is set to retire in June. Pictured is a scene from “A Midsummer Night’s Dream.” (Julie Slama/City Journals)

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