Drama Online is a fantastic resource for anyone studying or performing theatre, which can be accessed through the University of Sheffield Library. The collection features full text digital versions of over 2000 plays from over 500 playwrights. These include, among others, William Shakespeare, Samuel Beckett, Caryl Churchill, Bertolt Brecht, debbie tucker green, and John Osborne. The coverage is growing with the works of Samuel Beckett and over 100 additional plays from Nick Hern Books - a leading UK publisher of performing arts materials - being some recent additions.
Plays can be browsed by genre or time period, as well as by the playwright or practitioner name. You can also search for plays with a particular number of roles or scenes. Drama Online includes biographical information about each playwright and contextual information about each play and its original performance.
The plays themselves include embedded commentary and textual notes. Signing up for a personal account gives you access to the annotation tools. You can bookmark particular lines and add your own tags and notes. If necessary you can also print your notes along with the section of the play they refer to. Drama Online have produced some helpful video tutorials about the different functionality of the site. These are available on the left hand side of the Drama Online homepage.
To get to Drama Online simply search StarPlus for Drama Online, follow the links to full text access and to Connect to Drama Online. Next time you can leave that Collected Works of Shakespeare at home!
Image credit: Nick Hern Books