Othello, the Moor of Venice
A strong young woman elopes with her “outsider” beloved and goes with him to a foreign country, where a disgruntled underling wreaks havoc on the lives of all. “Then must you speak of one that loved not wisely, but too well."
See Wikipedia for a detailed synopsis and comments on the themes and motifs in this play.
For those of you who provide parts a scene at a time, this Character Chart shows all the characters' lines in each scene: Othello
If your group reads the plays straight through in one sitting and you want to divide up the parts, we have a number of “cast” lists already divided up for you. These are text files that you can edit to suit your readers. We always recommend in a straight-through read that each participant take a moment beforehand to mark their parts—then everything proceeds so smoothly.
• Cast for 7, plus a reader for Stage Directions
• Cast for 8, plus a reader for Stage Directions
• Cast for 9 (both Iago and Othello's lines are split between two readers), plus a reader for Stage Directions
• Cast for 10 (Iago's lines are split between two readers, but one Othello), plus a reader for Stage Directions
The University of Virginia provides a number of supplemental documents from Shakespeare's time that cast reflections on the play, including a contemporaneous play, the original source story, the deportation of “blackamoors” from England by Queen Elizabeth, and more.
This link is to Marjorie Garber's free Harvard lecture on Othello.
This is an audio recording of the play by professional actors with sound effects.