ACT the waves like Arion on a dolphin’s

ACT I

Scene I. Duke Orsino’s palace.

Enter Duke Orsino, Curio, and other Lords; Musicians attending

Duke Orsino

If it’s true that music makes people more love, keep playing. But if you give me too much of it, I’ll get sick of it and stop loving. Wait! Play that part again! It sounded sad. Oh my god, that part sounded like a sweet wind blowing gently over a bank of violets, carrying their scent with it. That’s enough. Stop. It doesn’t sound as sweet as it did before. Ugh, love is so restless! It makes you want everything, but then makes you sick of everything a minute later, no matter how good they are. Love is so vivid and fantastical that nothing can compare it.

 
Curio
Do you want to go hunting, my lord?
 
Duke Orsino
Hunt for what, Curio?
 
Curio
Male Deer
 
Duke Orsino
That’s what I’m doing Curio—although it is my heart that’s being hunted. Oh, when I first saw Olivia, it seemed like she made the atmosphere around her sweeter and purer. Instantly, I was transformed into a deer, and my craving for her has pursued me like a pack of vicious dogs. (Enter Valentine) So, what’s going on? What have you heard from her?
 
Valentine
I’m sorry Lord, but they wouldn’t let me in. But I got the following answer from her maid. Olivia’s not going to show her face for the next seven years—not even the sky itself. Alternatively, she will go around wearing a veil like a nun, and once a day she’ll water her bedroom with her tears, all of this for the love for her dead brother. The reason being is that she wants to keep the keep the memory of her brother fresh forever.
 
Orsino
Oh, if she loves her brother so much, I wonder how she will love me when I finally win her over and make her forget all her other distractions! Her mind and heart will be ruled by one man only—me! Take me to the garden. I need to sit in a beautiful place and think about love.

 
Scene 2
Enter Viola, a Captain, and sailors

Viola
What country is this, my friends?
 
Captain
This is Illyria, my lady.

 
Viola
Then what am I going to do in Illyria? My brother is in heaven. Maybe there’s a chance he might have not drown.—What do you think, sailors?
 
Captain
It is really lucky for you yourself to be saved.

 
Viola
Oh, my poor brother! Maybe he might have some luck be saved too!
 
Captain
It’s possible, ma’am. Don’t give up yet. When our ship was wrecked and you and a few other survivors were clinging onto our lifeboat, I saw your brother bond himself to a big mast floating in the sea. He was acting hopefully and courageously in the dangerous situation. As long as I could see him, he stayed above the waves like Arion on a dolphin’s back.

 
Viola
(giving him money)
Thank you for saying that, here’s some money to express my thankfulness. Since I escaped the disaster, it is much easier to think that he survived too, and what you just said reasons me to hope for the best. Are you familiar with this area?
 
Captain
Yes, ma’am, I know this place well. I was born and raised less than three hours from here.

 
Viola
Who is the ruler of this place?
 
Captain
A noble duke, in his character.

 
Viola
What is the duke’s name?
 
Capitain
Orsino
 
Viola
Orsino… Oh! I’ve heard my father mention him. He was still a bachelor when I first heard of him!
 
Captain
He’s still a bachelor, or at least a month ago when I left. But there is a rumor—you know, people always gossip about the royalty—that he was falling in love with the beautiful Olivia.

 
Viola
Who’s she?

Captain
She’s a very virtuous young woman, the daughter of a count who died the year before. Her brother had been caring of her for a while now, but then he died too. They say she’s totally sworn off seeing men now, because of the remembrance of her brother.

 
Viola
Oh, I wish I could work for her, It would be a good way to hide myself from the world until the time was right to recognize myself.

 
Captain
That would be a hard thing to do. She won’t let anyone see her, not even the duke’s messengers.

 
Viola

You seem to be a good person, Captain, and though people who look beautiful on the outside but are often shady inside, I believe that you have a fair mind to go with your good looks and manners. Please—and I’ll pay you a lot for this—help me hide my identity, and find me the right disguise so I can look the way I want. I want to serve this Duke. You’ll introduce me to him as a eunuch. You won’t be wasting your time, because I really can sing and talk to him about many different kinds of music, so he’ll be happy to have me for his service. Only time will tell what will happen after that—so just please keep quiet about what I’m trying to do.

 
Captain
You can behis eunuch and I would keep my nouth shut. I swear on my life I won’t tell your secret.

 
Viola
Thank you, now show me the way.