Archive | August, 2010

“Gallop apace”

Waiting. Wishing. Wanting. Willing. Shakespeare packs so much into Juliet’s 30 line speech as she looks forward to spending her first night together with Romeo. Her thoughts race like her passions, and her speech aches with impatience.  She yearns for ‘love-performing night’ to come, and luckily for us this brief interlude before darkness falls is […]

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Shakespeare’s Women – Beatrice

This post is part of our Shakespeare’s Women series in parternship with the collections team over at Finding Shakespeare. On flickr we have created a collection portraying these wonderful ladies. I have been thinking about Beatrice. Why do I like this character so much? Why do lots of people vote for Beatrice as the character […]

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Quivering wreck: Max Beerbohm’s Shakespeare

Two of my favourite items among the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust’s many treasures are drawings by ‘the incomparable Max’, as Bernard Shaw called Max Beerbohm (1872-1976). Half-brother of the great actor manager Herbert Beerbohm Tree, Max was equally talented as a writer and as a visual artist. Although he wrote a brilliant novel, Zuleika Dobson, he […]

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A story for all

How do you tell a story that suits everyone who hears it? It is not uncommon for visiting university students to reflect that they found a production unsatisfying in various ways. I generally ask them what it would have taken for the production to have satisfied them. Out comes a long list of desires. Perhaps […]

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Bookshop Democracy

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Not what we ought to say about the R.S.C.?

It has come to be something of an annual highlight. The hall of The Shakespeare Institute is full with members of the R.S.C.’s Summer School (most of them Shakespearian amateurs and enthusiasts; some of them Shakespeare professionals), and in walk Stanley Wells and Michael Billington to a significant round of applause. They have come to […]

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Shakespeare’s Women – Cleopatra

This post is part of our Shakespeare’s Women series in parternship with the collections team over at Finding Shakespeare. On flickr we have created a collection portraying these wonderful ladies. For my money Cleopatra is Shakespeare’s most sensuous, seductive and sensational creation. As a character she defies lazy labeling, and delights in the fact that […]

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“…such wealth brings…”

Earlier this week Paul posted a blog about Sonnet 29 (“When, in disgrace with fortune and men’s eyes….). This particular sonnet seems to possess a deep resonance for many readers. But where did you first hear or read it? It could be that the sonnet found you, before you found it! Perhaps it was while […]

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Getting to Enjoy Shakespeare

I’m often asked how I first ‘got into’ Shakespeare, and naturally this starts me thinking of my earliest memories of his work. I have no recollection of encountering it when I was a little boy either at home or at primary school. I went to a grammar school – Kingston High School, Hull – in […]

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