• In this article, Tom Cornford reflects on his experience of using approaches derived from Michael Chekhov’s artistic technique to direct Shakespeare’s plays. His account is contextualised with references to Chekhov’s own writings and illustrated with examples of exercises developed specifically to address the challenges of finding a contemporary performance-vocabulary for Shakespeare. Cornford argues that, ‘by concentrating our attention on the importance of how we work, Chekhov’s technique is a means both of liberating and expanding the art of performance as well as of appreciating Shakespeare as a complete artist of the theatre.’