Twelfth Night at Bothwell Castle

Recently my husband and I went to a performance of Twelfth Night and the venue was Bothwell Castle. The stage was very small and was set at one end of the courtyard of the castle so it was outdoors. Given it was an evening in July, one might think there’d be no issue there however this is Scotland so it was raining and windy – although the rain stopped just as the performance started.

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With the venue being Bothwell Castle, it really added to the atmosphere of the whole play and it felt very appropriate whereas for a more modern play it might not have.

Twelfth Night was one of Shakespeare’s plays that I had never read nor seen before so it was great to experience it for the first time in that setting. The play was hilarious with all credit to the actors and production. It was quite a modest production with a handful of actors who each played two characters but this only added to the humour of it.

As I sat there in 2017 watching a play which was written between 1601-1602 in Bothwell Castle which was built in the 13th century, it got me thinking.

How much time can pass and so much can change and yet there are some things withstand time. However unlikely and contrasting they become to the present they keep being a part of. However distant they become to the current events, yet something makes them remain relevant even in a quiet way.

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So many stories by different authors around the world, are still relevant today. So many books, plays and tales remain a part of culture, a part of the present day narrative. However much time may pass, human nature essentially doesn’t change and history is a cycle which repeats itself. So it stands to reason that stories, whenever they were written, will always be able to be relevant, they will always be relatable or interesting in some way.

Who would have thought that a poet and playwright born in the 16th century would be so relevant hundreds of years later. Studied at schools and his numerous plays performed worldwide; adaptations continually made. How often we see adaptations, even in the most subtle of ways, proving that stories from hundreds of years ago can always be relevant, they can always be applied to the present day because while the settings, technology and ways of life may change – people don’t.

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