Chapter 1 Chapter 1 Summary King of Shadows by Susan Cooper is a tale about a young boy's journey to overcome his devastating past in exchange for A hopeful future. Nat is an orphan who escapes into the world of the theatre to avoid his sadness. Nat is magically Transported back to Elizabethan England where he becomes apprenticed to William Shakespeare, who helps Nat learn to Face his emotions and properly grieve his parents. King of Shadows is a thoughtful tale of discovery set in one of the Most exciting times in the history of the theatre. In Cambridge, Massachusetts, in 1999, the Company of Boys is playing a series of theatre games on their first day of rehearsal for Julius Caesar and A Midsummer Night's Dream by William Shakespeare. Nat thinks some of the games, Including tag, are childish for the group of teenagers. The company's director, Arby, leads the group through the games to Help the boys become acquainted with one another and build trust. Arby explains that the Company of Boys must Function as a trusting family in order for their plays to be successful. When one of the boys plays a trick on Nat Pretending to drop him during a trust exercise, Arby kicks the boy out of the company and sends him home. The Company of Boys has twenty-four members, including the actors and the rehearsal staff. Arby and his staff selected The boys through a series of auditions in schools and youth theatres around the United States. The Company of Boys will Rehearsal for three weeks in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and then will fly to London to continue rehearsals and perform Their plays at the new Globe theatre, which is celebrating its inaugural season. Throughout the first week of rehearsals in Cambridge, Arby continues playing games with the group to strengthen the Company's bond. During the first reading of the play, Arby points out Nat's bad acting habits, including speaking too Quickly and speaking with a southern accent. After the reading, Nat and some of the other actors discuss with Arby's Assistant, Rachel, how strict his methods are. The conversation changes direction and the group discusses why they like Being actors. When the group learns that Nat's parents are dead, Nat becomes uncomfortable talking about his past and Receiving sympathy. As Nat excuses himself to go to the bathroom, he explains that he will feel better when he is in London pretending to be his character instead of being himself. Chapter 1 Analysis The main character is introduced here. Nat is a quiet and thoughtful boy who does not cause trouble or put up a fight. When a boy plays a trick on him, Nat apologizes for the boy's actions. Then, when his director, Arby, is hard on him in Rehearsal, he easily is overwhelmed. Nat is good at repressing his emotions and true opinions. He is thankful for the help Of Rachel, the voice coach, because she is young like the rest of the boys in the company, and easier to relate to. Nat is a Smart actor who is pleased to be in the Company of Boys and eager to learn from the other actors around him. Nat is an orphan being raised by his aunt. Nat tries to hide his sadness, but is still grieving the loss of his parents. Nat's Refusal to talk about the death of his parents foreshadows his struggle to properly grieve their deaths. He escapes from the Troubles of his life by acting on stage. When Nat tells some of the other members of the Company of Boys that his Parents are dead, he immediately wants to change the subject, and ultimately walks away to escape the reality altogether. The reader should note that Nat's denial to grieve will only become more complicated as rehearsal continues and he Suppresses his feelings.