THE STORY SO FAR: In her disguise as Cesario, Viola has gone to woo Olivia for her master, Orsino (with whom Viola is secretly in love). Olivia says she can't love Orsino, but Orsino is kind of a jerk and won't take no for an answer. For some reason, Viola still loves him.
The "Patience on a monument" monologue is another one of Viola's famous speeches. If you didn't make it through the whole episode of Playing Shakespeare that I shared with you on Tuesday, here it is again, so you can hear Dame Judi's take on it (around the 48-minute mark).