The Mechanicals

Dear Agony Aunt

Dear Agony Aunt, We have been rehearsing for a play we are going to perform at the Duke’s wedding, but we are concerned that one of our characters might be too scary and therefore frighten the ladies in the audience. It’s a lion! Not a real one, but quite convincing! What advice can you give us in order not to terrify our audience? Mechanicals x


  1. I think what you need to worry about is not the lion, but the donkey frightening the ladies! For most of the ladies do not have the magic flowers potion in them! (Tessa)

  2. Try making the lion slightly less realistic, that way maybe the ladies won't be as frightened. (by Anon.)

  3. @Shakespeare's Globe= LOL :D

    @Mechanicals Have an intro saying stuff like 'Hey Chicks, I'm not a real lion. If you are scared, you shouldn't be here.' This stuff is easy to remember but may get you kicked off stage. I'm Still Digging the "FYI I'm not a real lion." I Think it should be "FYI I'm not a real lion... DUH!"
    Good luck! (By Sophie)

  4. I think the scarier the better, or maybe if you think it is THAT scary (which I doubt it is) then maybe you could stand at the back of the stage and not get really close to the audience. Or maybe growl a little quieter? Hope that helps (: (by Anon.)

  5. Put a collar and bell on the lion. Or a bow in his hair like the Cowardly Lion after his visit to Emerald City's beauty parlor. Or call him Dave. Any of those should help? (by Anon.)

  6. I think that killing the lion is a little extreme. Why doesn't the actor wear a badge saying "FYI I'm not a real lion". (by Shakespeare's Globe)

  7. kill the lion. (by Anon.)

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To show our simple skill, / That is the true beginning of our end. (Quince. 5.1.108)

[Quince. 5.1.108]

Relationship Status:



Our names are Peter Quince, Francis Flute, Robin Starveling, Tom Snout and Snug and we are going to put on a play which is to be performed at Theseus’ and Hippolyta’s wedding day. I, Peter Quince hand out all of the parts and we all agree to meet and rehearse in the forest. As we are rehearsing something strange happens and we witness Bottom transformed into an ass. Bottom is then late for his next rehearsal call and so we worry that he won’t make the performance. He arrives just in time though and we perform our play to the wedding party.







Also Called:

  • ‘company’ (Quince. 1.2.1)
  • ‘masters’ (Quince. 1.2.91)
  • ‘actors’

O wall, O sweet, O lovely wall

  1. (3.1.115-16) I see their knavery: this is to make an ass of me, to / fright me, if they could.

  2. (4.2.40) Dear actors, eat no onions nor garlic, for we are to utter sweet breath.

  3. (5.1.205) This is the silliest stuff that ever I heard.


  1. Clip 1

    William Oxborrow discusses his initial impressions of Quince. > Play
  2. Clip 2

    Louise Collins discusses her initial impressions of Snug. > Play
  3. Clip 3

    Peter Bray discusses his initial impressions of Flute. > Play
  4. Clip 4

    Richard James-Neale discusses his initial impressions of Snout. > Play
  5. Clip 5

    In conversation with the Mechanicals: William (Quince) and Russell (Bottom). > Play
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