Othello 1.2.75-84

This recording is a reading from Othello act 1 scene 2 lines 75 through 84. I was reading as the character Brabantio who is a rich and powerful business man and the father of Desdemona. In this passage he is speaking to Othello and accusing him of stealing his daughter and belittling him by telling him he could never be loved by her. This is a very dramatic scene and because of this my tone had to be stern like a fathers tone yet caring because he is speaking of his own daughter. The pacing of the passage was the hardest to get because if I took too long of a pause it became awkward but if there was no pause the entire line could be messed up. It was a gentle balance that was hard to get exactly right. I really had to embody who I was speaking as and take on their traits as if they were my own.

Iago’s Scheming: 1.3.426-447

In doing this short monologue from Act 1 Scene 3 of Othello, it became clear to me just what a scheming wretch this Iago character is. The line “double knavery” especially struck me as a sign of his abundance of ill-will, and I sought to portray that through a sour tone. He actually cogitates on just how he can build himself up while breaking Othello down, and settles on killing two birds with one stone. He thinks little of people whom he is not, which is especially true with poor Roderigo who is nothing more than his “fool” and his “purse.” I sought to portray Iago’s hubris and hatred by talking in low, maniacal tones and one might expect from a dastardly fiend.

Wise Words From Desdemona

I picked a passage from Desdemona, lines 1.3.208-218. In this passage, Desdemona is speaking to her father meticulously but also with a bit of pain. She is torn between her father, who provided life, and Othello, her new husband. I read the passage with intensity and no apprehension but I thought it was necessary to add some sadness because she is confronting her father about how she intends to live. Desdemona is not trying to yell at her father, but rather clearly inform him so the pace must be constant and direct. Inflection was needed when Desdemona is referring to her mother as an example of how she wants to behave. The inflection made Desdemona’s point more obvious and more personal to her own father.

Iago the Snake

The lines I chose from Othello is Act 3, Scene 3, lines 368-378. The character I played was Iago. Tone and inflection play a huge part in understanding not only the surface text and what is actually being said, but the subtext as well, why the character says these things. It’s no secret that Iago manipulates people to get what he wants, but performing this passage made me really understand the full extent of unease the character gives.

Othello speaking to his new wife, Desdemona

I chose to voice record Act 2 Scene 1 lines 199-209 of Shakespeare’s play- Othello. In this recording I am reading for Othello. I found it challenging to be able to read 10 straight lines of old English without messing up. In this passage I had to portray the tone of Othello speaking to his new wife, Desdemona. I did my best to make the tone sound calm and when there were parts of the play with exclamation points I raised my voice in order to accurately portray the scene. I felt like a calmer tone with different volumes and expression would be fitting for this part of the play, because of all the feelings of emotions Othello receives when he sees Desdemona.

Iago speech

Important Advice from the Duke

I did Othello 1.3.229-240, playing the Duke as he advises Brabantio. I learned that by changing the pacing and inflection, you can make the characters say something completely different. The Duke as I played it was very sincere in his advice toward a grieving father, but it could have been played any number of ways, with him dismissing Brabantio or laughing at him.

Desdemona: Sad and Solemn

I recorded lines 175-186 from 4.2 of Shakespeare’s Othello. I played Desdemona when she turns to Iago for help. I learned that tools such as tone, inflection, volume, and pacing can be helpful in displaying what emotion the characters are portraying and can help draw emphasis to certain parts that might need to be emphasized. Tone can also impact how lines are perceived. Through these tools, I learned that Desdemona is very sad and a bit solemn, while also desperate for Iago’s help.

Desdemona: Sympathetic and Annoyed

I picked Desdemona’s passage, 1.3.208-218, from the play Othello. To perfect my interpretation and delivery of the passage, I had to record it several times. The first time I did it, I just read the passage with no emotion. I wasn’t very happy with the result of it, so I had to re- read it and record it several times after that until I felt like I got it right. I learned that different literary devices can affect how the play is presented, and are useful not only in the literary world but also greatly utilized by actors. I tried to read my passage in a detached tone, because although Desdemona was trying to feel sympathetic for her father, she also seemed to annoyed that he was so protective of her. I tried to do it in a more quiet tone, because I believe that she was rationally speaking to her father, rather than yelling at him and telling her off. I tried to have a slow, articulate pace, so my audience can understand what I am saying as I presented my monologue. Desdemona’s character is quiet and sweet, but also sensibly strong willed. Her goal with this speech was to be kind to her father, while still being firm with him.

Desdemona​’s Choice

I chose to recite a passage from the play, Othello. The passage I recited, 1.3.208-218, is originally spoken by Desdemona as she defends her marriage to her father. As I recorded the passage, multiple times, I came to see that the smallest change to the tone, pace, or wording of the passage can significantly affect the portrayal of the person. Longer pauses with a lower tone can add a sense of a more pensive and somber individual. Faster paces can often imply that a person is more confident or dishonest. Emphasizing different words can change the meaning of sentences, leaving the listener with a distinct impression. Narration is a subtle art that requires great skill and talent.

While reading the lines of Desdemona, it became clear she was torn between her father and husband. She acknowledges she owes much to her father for raising her and providing education, yet, at the same time, she believed she now owes her loyalty to her husband.  Choosing between two significant men seems a difficult task, so Desdemona relies on the example that has been set before her. Her mother gave up her father and shifted her allegiance to her husband, Desdemona’s father. This acts as the cause for Desdemona to put her husband, Othello over her father, a decision that is truly difficult for her.

Image:Online Collection of Brooklyn Museum; Photo: Brooklyn Museum, 67.24.22_SL1.jpg

Othello Passage

I chose the play Othello. I did act 1, scene 3, lines 208-218. I played the character of Desdemona. My own rehearsal and oral performance taught me a lot about the impact of tone, inflection, volume, and pacing. It showed me that these factors can really alter the perspective and message people get about the lines. I also learned that my emphasizing certain words and phrases, you can really change the whole tone of the passage. Overall, this affects how the character is perceived throughout the rest of the novel. As I was performing, I understood Desdemona’s traits and emotions. It showed me how distraught she is over the situation and how difficult it is for her to answer the questions her father asked her. She had to have a lot of bravery and courage to stand up to her father like that so that she could stand her ground. Despite the difficulty of the question and situation however, she is still very passionate about her feelings for Othello.

Iago’s plan

This segment occurs in the play Othello by Shakespeare, 3.3.168-178, and shows the main villain in the play, Iago, planning to manipulate the main character, Othello. For this portion, I tried to convey Iago’s villainous attitude and tone, trying to make my voice seem darker and foreboding. By speaking slower, and enunciating more, I found that I sounded much more menacing and conniving, both important traits of Iago’s character. For certain sections, however, I had to speed it up a little more, to make the character sound more realistic. Since I understood most of what Iago’s character represents in the play, I knew I had to emphasize the dark tones and the villainous attitude that he represents. By doing this, I thought I could capture the essence in which this segment was written.

Emilia lashes out

This is 4.2.159-169 from the Shakespeare’s Othello. This section is spoken by the character Emilia when she is speaking to Iago about Othello’s accusation that Desdemona is a whore. I learned that the tone you take when speaking is very important for portraying emotions. In my section, I tried to have an angry tone because I believe that Emilia is outraged. Volume is also important in conveying emotion so I took up a loud volume when she is angry, but a bit quieter when she was pondering the possibility of Desdemona actually being a whore. I also tried to use some inflection at the end of the questions to emphasize the pondering aspect further. I also quickened the pace as Emilia became more exasperated to convey her frustration and anger. I understood that Emilia cares deeply about Desdemona and is, hence, very upset that Othello would call her a whore. She only entertains the possibility for a moment, then turns to rage.

Iago’s Plan

For this exercise, I chose the play, Othello. I chose to read a passage of Iago’s dialogue (Act 1.3.426-445). I learned about the importance of emphasizing certain words and also about how you can express emotion by highlighting certain syllables of a word and not others. I also learned about the importance your pacing can have and how drawing out phrases can make them more important. While I was creating the recording I understood that Iago was creating a scheme so I tried to make my voice sound mischievous in order to convey a distrustful character. I also understood the contrast between Othello and Cassio in this section and tried to inflect descriptions of both characters differently to make a distinction.

Othello Voice Recording

From the play Othello I chose lines 188-196 from Act I Scene 3. In this section, I played the character of Othello as he explains how he earned D’s love. In recording this passage I saw how important the vocal inflections and use of various tones changed the meaning of the passage. While reciting this passage I stressed the parts when Othello refers to himself as it is important while he is talking about the ways that he woo’d Desdemona. I also included different length pauses as different parts of Othello’s speech require a pause to dramatize or understand what is important. It was also important for me to keep a steady pace as in this situation of being accused of witchcraft, Othello remains calm to show he is sure in his response. Othello has a commanding and sure tone throughout the play to emphasize his importance and authority in situations. Through my reading of the passage, I reflected this tone of authority as he speaks to the Duke and Brabantio, her father. Through my recitation, I also wanted to emphasize the conviction that Othello shows through his speech and tries to draw from others when he speaks.

Desdemona to Her Father

I chose Othello. I did a part from Act 1 Scene 3 lines 208-218.

I played the character of Desdemona in which she is talking/addressing her father.

I learned that the impact of tone, inflection, volume and pacing is really important. If you are reading in a monotone voice, everything sounds the same and there is no emotion. But you also have to know how to fluctuate and use your tone and volume to bring out a certain emotion.

While performing this, I got the understanding that Desdemona is calm and knows how to act in front of anyone. Even as her father is trying to get her to stay, she remains calm and answers back with calmness and like a sense of understanding. She not only wants her understanding and knowledge known, but that she too knows and understands what is and has been given to her.

A dark and sad passage from Othello

I recorded a passage form Shakespeare’s play, Othello. The passage is in Act 5 scene 2, lines 397 to 406. The passage is Othello address a small group of people in his room. Othello is remorseful and angry during this part, because it is after he kills this wife, Desdemona. This passage is dark and sad, but also I feel as though it is a good closure moment.

Desdemona Slaps Back

This is a recording of 1.3.208-218 from Shakespeare’s Othello. I am portraying Desdemona in this. I learned that tone, inflection, volume, pacing etc can change how the character appears to feel. For example, when I increased my volume and sharpened my tone, Desdemona appears to be angry. When I softened my tone and lowered my volume, Desdemona appears more desperate. From my performance, I learned how smart Desdemona is. When she uses her father’s marriage to prove her point, she has caught her father in a place where he help but agree with her.

Emotions of Emilia in Othello

The play I chose was Shakespeare’s “Othello,” Act 4 Scene 2 lines 159-169.

The character speaking is Emilia. She is very mad about how Othello treats his wife. He calls her a whore and then Emilia begins to criticize and threaten Othello because there’s no possible way that Desdemona hasn’t been a loyal wife all this time.

I learned that the impact of tone, inflection, volume and pacing in your own rehearsal and oral performance is crucial to reciting a passage well. You have to show, with emotion how the character really feels; for example Emilia was drastically upset of Othello’s recent actions.

As I read the passage I learned that Emilia deeply cares for Desdemona and gets very emotionally upset whenever she is spoken down on. She got very angry when Othello called her a whore.

Desdemona: 1.3.208-218

Othello Close Reading


Act 1 Scene 3

Lines 208-218


I learned that tone heavily impacts how words are interpreted. By using the tone I did, I understood that Desdemona as coming from a place of both frustration and respect.

Desdemona 1.3. 208-218

Recording a Passage from Othello

This is a recording of Desdemona (1.3.208-218) in Othello. It was an interesting experience recording and re-recording this. I learned that tone has an immense impact on how the meaning of words is interpreted. Pacing and volume allow for emphasis on certain words and the message one wants to convey with their words. It made me think about how people verbally communicate and how different interpretations of language can change the meaning completely. I assumed Desdemona is experiencing frustration and a bit of sadness but overall she is firm in her decision to be loyal to her husband above all else.

Othello Audio Reading 1.3.208-218

This is scene 1.3 lines 208 through 218 from the play Othello by Shakespeare. In this scene Desdemona is confronting her father after eloping with Othello. I am voicing Desdemona. I learned that the inflection of Desdemona’s voice can change the interpretation of the scene. For example, if she sounds angry and loud, it changes the audience’s entire perception of her. However, I chose to read this with a tone that shows she is struggling. She is passionate about her love for her father and her husband. Furthermore, her slow pace of talking helps the audience understand her strife and conflict in this difficult situation. I began to understand that Desdemona is truly loving, which makes the plot of the play that much more ironic and tragic.

Othello 1.3.208-218

I chose to do Othello act 1 scene 3 lines 208-218. The character I played was Desdemona. I learned that Desdemona speaks in a sincere and low tone. She speaks slowly making sure that every word she says is understood. At this moment, Desdemona was understanding her father and saw his objection with her marriage, but just as she understands him, he must understand her. That is why she speaks in a slow but sincere tone to make sure that she sees him, but he must see her too.

Iago is a snake

I recorded passage 3.3.368-378 from the play Othello by Shakespeare. In the passage I speak as Iago. He is a snake, lying to Othello to try and make it look like his wife is cheating on him. The lines can be voiced many ways, but the way I chose to do it represents Iago’s trickery and bad intent. Through performing the lines, I could tell that Iago likes to plan his next moves carefully and think of every possible solution.

Othello Recording

  • What play did you choose? What act, scene and line numbers did you choose?
    • Othello. Act 3, Scene 3, lines 207-223.
  • Which character did you play?
    • Othello
  • What did you learn about the impact of tone, inflection, volume and pacing in your own rehearsal and oral performance?
    • I learned about how in love Othello is with Desdemona. I realized in my rehearsal that Othello’s speech seemed to be rushed and even portrayed the sense of insecurity. I learned that the impact of tone, inflection, volume and pacing means a whole lot in the overall message a speech gives. The importance of these aspects of oral performance gives insight to the emotions felt by the orator. I used inflection in my voice when directing the parts specifically addressing Iago, and when Othello comes to terms with his own thoughts. Towards the end, I started to slow down as Othello’s thought process was coming to a close. This slower pace signifies a somewhat affirmative tone in the speech. Overall, I really loved this part of the play because it was interesting to observe the emotions Othello felt with reaction of Iago’s Manipulation.
  • What did you understand about the character’s traits and emotions as you were performing?
    • I understand that Othello is deeply concerned about the jealousy aspect that he fears to feel. However, in this scene, Othello acts on the last attempt to ignore Iago and to believe his own instinct that Desdemona is pure and has not done anything wrong.

My Voice Entering Shakespeare’s World

I have chosen the play “Othello,” Act IV. II. 175-184. The character I play is Desdemona.

What I learned from being this character was how to speak, how to pace, and what my tone should sound like in this particular character’s way. There is a special way this character speaks. Because of this character’s personality and all the things that make this character who she is, Shakespeare uses words that identify with that.

The tone of your voice, the volume, and your pace all has to be in a particular way to make it seem like you are the actual character. So with all of that in mind, it took many rewinds and re-dos to try to reach that expectation.

Othello: Loving and Serious

I chose the play, Othello. I chose act.1 scene.3 and lines 276 to 286.

I chose the character, Othello.

I learned that it’s not easy trying to read something and sound a certain way when I’m talking, at that when I’m speaking a whole different way as would Shakespeare. It’s even harder because it’s kind of hard to understand, but as I kept rehearsing and the wording got more understandable to where I could add my own tone, inflection, volume and pacing to it.

As I was performing, I notice that Othello was the more loving type, and he really cared for Desdemona (his wife) more than anything. I noticed that when he talk his emotion seems to change throughout lines as if he was mad but at the same time, he seems to be talking proudly of his Desdemona. He seems like a loving and serious type of person.

Iago is Sneaky

The play I chose for my recording was Othello.

The character I chose to play in the recording was Iago.

Something I learned about recording and your tone is that it changes up the entire way of how you picture something in your head. And I noticed with your volume that the better your volume is, the better you will get attention to what you are saying and it will be a lot easier to picture.

What I learned is that my character sounds a bit sneaky the way that my character uses his word and how his volume is when he talks to certain people throughout the entire play.

Voice of Desdemona

I chose Act IV, Scene II lines 168-177. I was playing as Desdemona. As I was playing as Desdemona, I realized that for my tone and volume to be good, I had to imagine myself in her shoes.

For my first, I had to listen to myself, and I can tell that I needed significant improvements in my tone. I wanted to make it seem like I was right there.

I understood that Desdemona was in a confused and sad place and I had put myself in her shoes also.

Desdemona Is Innocent.

I choose Othello by William Shakespeare Act 4 Scene 3 lines 28-37. Playing Desdemona, I learned that I had to be very careful with the tone of my voice and the dramatic tone that I had to use because in this scene Desdemona was talking about hanging herself white singing “Willow.” 

When I was practicing Desdemona’s speech in this particular Act, I felt pity for what she has gone through (accusations from her husband) also the words she said were sad because she was thinking of taking her life because the only men she ever loved claimed that she cheated. 

Desdemona is innocent.

That Shakespeare Voice Thou!

I chose Act 3, Scene 3 lines 223-233.

I am playing the role of Emilia, wife of Iago, Desdemona’s best friend.

I learned that you need to have a whole lot of patience, to understand the impact of the story and the lines that will be recited. In order to get the right tone, I learned that it’s needed to be said multiple times so it can sound as natural as possible.

I understood how Emilia is feeling towards her husband, I could relate to her emotionally, which is why I chose one of her quotes. I can feel Emilia’s desire to please her husband, to make him happy so he can take notice on Emilia.

Iago: More than Two-faced

I chose Lines 226-236 from Act II Scene III in “Othello.” I played the roles of Cassio and Iago in this excerpt.

I learned that for you to be involved with the text, you need to be one with text and put yourself in that scenario.

I found out that Iago is more than two-faced. I saw this because to be Iago you need to have a different voice.

Calm, but with passion

The play I chose was “Othello.” The act and scene I read were Act 3. Scene 3, and the line numbers were 199-208. The character I played was Othello.

What I learned was how much my voice changed little by little as I kept reading, the volume in my voice went from high to low, and it was much clearer. I read slowly, but I read calmly just like my character. I am usually the kind of person who reads really fast.

I understand that Othello speaks his mind freely in a very calm way, but with much passion.

Photo: “Othello” by Shehal Joseph is licensed under CC BY 2.0

Othello’s Many Traits

I choose “Othello,” Act 111 Scene 111, Lines 121-132. I choose the character Othello.

What I learned about the impact of tone was that you have to paste it right and project your voice at the right moments. What I learned about volume was that it is certain words that you have to raise your voice and lower your voice to.

In my rehearsal and in my oral performance I learned that when you are reading something it has to sound like you are not reading it off the paper. It has to sound like you know it by heart and that it has been memorized.

What I learned was that Othello can show that he has a lot of different characters in one. Also he portray many traits all in one person. One last thing I learned was that when Othello is talking you can tell weather it is a good or bad emotion.

Iago Plays it Cool with Roderigo

My class and I are reading Shakespeare’s “Othello.” I will be reciting from lines 294-313 Act 2.1.

I played Iago conversing with Roderigo about the downfall of Othello. I am a very insecure person when it comes to reciting something. I chose a tone that is cool with some big uproars and a mild pace.

Iago is evil with every intent to hurt Othello and if Desdemona gets caught in the crossfire than she will burn with him.

I spoke with a calm tone because Iago would play it cool around Roderigo with some uproars because Iago wants to get his point across, and that’s why my tone has a mild pace.

Othello: A Humble, Passionate, Accepting, and Brotherly Person

Our class chose to study the play of “Othello.” I chose to be Othello in Act 1, scene 3 lines 140-150.

I learned that the tone and volume was calm and relaxed because of Othello’s character and how he is throughout the play. So for my oral presentation, I had to be in a chill and honest mood.

I understood that Othello was a humble, passionate, accepting, and brotherly person so performing his part I had to show how he speaks towards others.

Othello’s Disappointment and Anger

The Shakespeare play I decided to choose was Othello. I chose Act Five Scene Two, Lines 80 – 90.

I  played the character of  Othello. I learned that tone plays a critical role in the speech. The volume and pace you choose to take can set moods and or feelings within the speech. Volume, pace, tone and inflections are crucial while giving an oral performance. 

I understood the disappointment and anger Othello felt.

Iago: Sneaky, Conniving, and Heartless

I chose to record from the play Othello. I worked from Act 1, Scene 3, Lines 393-403.

I played the character, Iago. I learned that to be Iago you have to believe that you are sneaky, conniving, and heartless. You have to talk slow and with passion and the desire to get revenge. It is like your plotting every move carefully.

I understood that Iago had a lot of hatred inside of him. I also realized that Iago was very selfish and didn’t think about anybody but himself.

Iago Wants Power

The Play I chose was called Othello By William Shakespeare. My recording was from Act 3, Scene 3, Lines 512 – 519 and Lines 525 – 526.

I play the antagonist of the plan, Iago. What I learned about his tone is that he is aggressive and more like a leader now that he has Othello brainwashed in his lies.

Iago is a man who wants power which he does not have; he is a lower rank, so his emotions of greed and wanting power make him want to demonize Othello.

Iago is Angry and Confident

The play that I choose is Othello, Act 5 Scene 1 lines 12-22. The character that I played is Iago, and what I learned from the impact of the tone is that there is confidence in it. Iago was speaking to himself and was not doubting himself not even once, which is why he uses words such as restitution and ugly. Also when he said Roderigo’s name, there was a high tone to it.

When doing this audio it was challenging to get the tone that Iago had, but it was fun, and I was able to do it. Iago is one of my favorite characters. I love his tone and action, and that’s what helped me with my vocal performance.

What I understood about the character’s traits and emotions as I was doing the performance was that I knew that he was angry and confident. He planned perfectly on what he was going to do and what would be the consequences if he didn’t follow his plan.


Othello trapped by Iago

Hello, my name is Ilda Ortega, and I chose to mirror Othello’s speech from Act III, scene iii, lines 297-307. 

From my voice rehearsal, I learned that to sound like Othello, I had to have a sad tone, and stutter because, in this Act, Othello started to behave differently, in a negative way. 

I chose to sound as if I were dying at the beginning of the recording because, at the beginning of Othello’s speech, he had realized that the love of his life was “betraying him” with another man. In reality, if one were to find out this terrible news, and accept it, one would feel as if a part of their heart has been snatched. 

The connotation in Othello’s dialogue demonstrated that he was feeling distressed, agony, and regret. 

As I was performing, I noticed that Othello’s voice symbolized what it meant to suffer and what it was to fall into a “trap,” which we know was Iago’s plan all along.

What Emilia Knows

Hello, my name is Nickey, and I decided to voice over Othello’s Act IV Scene III on Line 101-108. I spoke as Emilia, and she is a character who has great insight and understanding into a relationship of man and women during her era.

I tried to have her voice carry some frustration because the thing she says is something that should be common sense, but it isn’t during her time: that women can feel the same emotions as men. However in some way she does carry some control because unlike other women, at least Emilia knows the situation very well.

It is her sad reality that men see women as jokes, and so I tried to practice carrying some irritation in her voice, but with a tone that shows Emilia’s confidence because she knows that women can do what men have taught them.

Image By Ludovico Marchetti (1853-1909) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Broken-hearted and Confused

Act III, Scene III; lines 199-209

I play Othello. To pull off a legit audio recording, allowing the audience to feel the emotions that Othello felt without physically seeing him, one has to pay close attention to their pauses and volume when reciting.

I found out that there had to be a lot of soul-searching and a natural relation of being broken-hearted and confused be able to record this piece.

Image from Wikipedia.

Othello was proud he took Brabantio from Desdemona

The play I chose was Othello, Act 1. Scene 3, Lines 86-104. The character I played was Othello.

What I learned about the tone was you had to speak with a deep voice. You also had to speak slow and have feelings like you care; you had to speak with pride, calm.  

When Othello talks about Desdemona, he has to speak lovingly. You can’t talk fast, and you should also stop between every line. 

As I was performing, I understood that Othello was proud he took Brabantio from Desdemona.

Image By Charles Knight (picture by CW Cope) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Cassio breaks Bianca’s heart with a handkerchief

Othello. 4.1. 162-168. Bianca gets upset by Cassio giving her a handkerchief, which she knows it belongs to another woman.

When performing a character’s tone and volume, first things first, we need to bring passion and soul into the text. Emphasize critical words. Put yourself in that situation to see how you are going to react to it. Don’t perform continuously; give yourself a short break from 1 to 3 seconds between lines to catch the attention of the audience if needed. Take time for rehearsal, keep practicing over and over.

Bianca was heartbroken with displeasure.