Congratulations to OV Bella Merlin (Co 81-83) on her latest book, Shakespeare & Company, When Action is Eloquence. The book is co-written with Tina Packer who is a founding Artistic Director of Shakespeare & Company.
Tina has directed Bella in several Shakespeare plays in the USA, including Richard III, The Merchant of Venice and Cymbeline. Bella writes, “This book was a four-year labour of love, and it combines actor training, education and performance, into what we’ve tried to create as a page-turner for a general readership as well as actors, directors, Shakespeare scholars, teachers, and theatre-lovers.”
Bella is highly experienced in her field and has had a passion for drama since she was a student at King’s. As a pupil here she took lead roles in productions including Mystery and Merriment and The Boy Friend. After King’s, Bella went on to study Drama and Theatre Arts at Birmingham University, where she gained a First Class Degree and later, her PhD in 1997.
She has been working for over twenty-five years in theatre, film, television and radio, and has directed both plays and opera. Her acting performances include leading roles in theatres around the UK, as well as numerous roles in new works and extensive performances for BBC Radio 4. She has also directed in a number of drama schools and universities and in 2012, she set up ‘Shakespeare-On-a-Shoestring’ (SOS) at University of California. Bella is currently Professor of Acting and Directing at the University of California, Riverside.
In 2015, Bella was invited to join the prestigious Barnabas Group here at King’s for her contribution to drama and teaching. Our own drama students have already benefited from Bella’s previous books and we are sure this one will make a great addition to their resources. Bella will also be doing a very special Q and A feature soon for King’s so keep your eyes peeled over the next few weeks!