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Indiana Youth Shakespeare Company Washes Their Hands to the Bard

By Jennifer Weingart, IPB News | Published on in Arts and Culture, Health
(Photo: Pixabay)


Monica Caponigro washes her hands to the Edmund’s monologue from the beginning of King Lear in an Instagram video on the Robinson Shakespear Company’s page.
(Photo: Monica Caponigro)

The Robinson Shakespeare Company at the University of Notre Dame is usually an after school drama program for kids. Because of the coronavirus those kids are out of school, and performances are cancelled. The company has turned to using Shakespeare to promote proper hand washing.

Twenty second songs, like ‘My Country Tis of Thee,’ or ‘Happy Birthday,’ (twice) are the usual recommended methods for timing your hand washing. But students at the Robinson Company are using Shakespeare.

That’s Monica Caponigro a Junior at John Adams High School in South Bend used Edmund’s monologue from the beginning of King Lear. She said the company wanted to step up and do something while they couldn’t be performing for audiences.

“All of these other amazing people are doing different challenges what can we do with Shakespeare because we’re a Shakespeare company?”

Other members used Ophelia’s monologue from Hamlet, Lady MacBeth from the Scottish Play, Adriana from a Comedy of Errors and Sonnet 85.

Toby Prince, a sixth grader at Grissom Middle School in Mishawaka, used a well-recognized monologue from Romeo and Juliet. He said doing the challenge, or just watching the videos can help keep spirits up.

“It can turn something that often can make you not that happy because you have to spend time and it reminds you of what’s going on in this world into something more fun and something that you enjoy.”

The students are posting the videos to Facebook and Instagram to educate others and to keep in touch while they’re not able to meet.