Can Shakespeare’s hometown produce another literary genius? Competition Winners
This post is an update on this previous news item.
STRATFORD-UPON-AVON, UK, MAY 26TH 2016
Over 200 students have taken part in a competition to write a sequel to one of Shakespeare’s plays – with the winning entry revealing what happened in the years that followed the deaths of Romeo and Juliet.
Classic book publisher Wordsworth Editions teamed up with Stratford-upon-Avon School earlier this year to run the literary competition, which celebrates 400 years of William Shakespeare’s legacy.
Over 200 Year 10 students at the Stratford-upon-Avon school in Shakespeare’s home town were invited to write a synopsis for a sequel to one of the Bard’s plays.
The overall winning entry, by Megan Hill, Molly Kingham, Navitha Jathin and Lucy Thruston-Nend, takes up the story of Romeo and Juliet, exploring how the relationship between the titular characters and their families may have evolved in the afterlife.
The touching story from the students is written in the first person, as told by Romeo, who reveals that he and Juliet have at last found peace – with the Montague and Capulet families having also ended their feud. “Every day that passed we became closer and more in love, which is something we couldn’t do on earth with our parents looking over us,” he explains.
The winning pupils each received a copy of Wordsworth Edition’s The Complete Works of Shakespeare – a reprint of the Shakespeare Head Press edition that presents all the plays in the chronological order in which they were written – with the team also winning a £100 book token.
Pupils who submitted the four runner-up entries each received a copy of The Complete Works. They were: Lauren Coope, Katy Harris and Harriette Upchurch for their Romeo and Juliet sequel; Grace Denyer and Matilda Chichowska for their A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Part 2; Abby Hall and Jasmine Stanley for their Romeo and Juliet 2; and Dannica Brown’s follow up to Twelfth Night.
“Our mission is to engage, enthuse and inspire: to create an environment where young people can achieve extraordinary things,” said Vicki McCracken, Curriculum Leader of English at Stratford-upon-Avon School. “Well done to all of our Year 10 students, who have used both their Shakespearean knowledge and their own imaginations to fantastic effect as part of this competition.”
“We teamed with Stratford-upon-Avon School for this competition to highlight the legacy of Shakespeare’s work and encourage the next generation of playwrights and storytellers to stoke their imaginations and put pens to paper,” said Helen Trayler, Managing Director at Wordsworth Editions. “We’ve been astounded at both the high volume and high standard of the entries, so I’d like to congratulate everyone in Year 10 for their efforts.”
Judges included Mrs Vicki McCracken, Curriculum Leader of English, Stratford-upon-Avon School; Cedric Watts, M.A. Ph.D Emeritus Professor of English, University of Sussex and Editor of Wordsworth Classics’ Shakespeare series; Dr Keith Carabine, University of Kent at Canterbury, General Editor of the Wordsworth Classics series; David Stuart Davies, Author, Editor and Playwright; and Nichola Trayler Barbrook, Director at Wordsworth Editions.