Key Words: mental distress, depression, low self-esteem, lack of dignity, self identification, self perception, self deprecation.
1. What new information did you learn about your character in Act 4 that would help an actor or actress understand him or her better?
The songs that she sings help express the reasons for her madness.
Ex. “He is dead and gone, lady” Act 4 Scene 5
2. In each scene where your character appears, what is his or her motivation and objective? In other words, what does he or she really want? (Sometimes this will be difficult or impossible to determine.)
In act 4 scene 5, Ophelia appears distressed because her objective is for people to listen and no one did until she became mad.
“Pray you, mark.”
3. How does your character feel about the events in Act 4? About Hamlet?
She’s conflicted by her feelings for Hamlet.
“He is dead and gone”
4. What do other characters say about your character and how do they react to him or her? How does your character feel about other characters?
“I will not speak with her.”-Gertrude
-Gertrude may not want to speak with Ophelia because she feels guilty that her son, Hamlet, killed Polonius and therefore she probably can’t face Ophelia out of guilt.
-Gertrude’s ignorance towards Ophelia’s madness doesn’t allow her to view past the superficial appearance.
“She is importunate, indeed distract. Her mood will needs be pitied.” –Gentleman
-His response to Gertrude
“Pray you, mark.” – Ophelia
-Ophelia just wants everyone to listen to her and she finally got fed up with being ignored and having her opinion being placed out of importance.
“How do you, pretty lady?” – Claudius
-He may want to be calming her down.
“ Alas, sweet lady, what imports this song?” - Gertrude
-Shows Gertrude’s shift in interest for Ophelia.
-She’s intrigued by the things Ophelia’s saying.