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Shakespeare

Has the mystery of Shakespeare’s Sonnets finally been solved? – The Guardian

Some of the finest, most quoted verses in the English language were dedicated to him, and for centuries literary scholars have tried to establish his identity.

Now fresh research suggests that the mysterious Mr WH, to whom Shakespeare’s sonnets were dedicated, was not, as had been thought, a contemporary English nobleman, but a recently deceased associate of the Sonnets’ publisher, Thomas Thorpe, which would explain the dedication’s strangely funereal form.

As Stanley Wells says in the article, “If it were agreed by scholars, this would be pretty momentous. People have spilled an enormous quantity of ink trying to identify this figure.” Indeed.

via Has the mystery of Shakespeare’s Sonnets finally been solved?.

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Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre Launches Web Site to Stream and Sell Films of Their Performances

Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre, which is a reproduction of the original Globe Theatre in London, has been performing plays by Shakespeare and other playwrights of his time since 1997. In recent year, they began filming the plays, and have released a number of DVDs and Blu-Rays of their productions. (I reviewed their Twelfth Night.) Today, Shakespeare’s […]

App Review: Shakespeare Pro

If you’re a Shakespeare buff like I am, you probably like having all of the Bard of Stratford’s works on your iPad or iPhone. It’s great to be able to dip into a play or poem when you have some down time, or when you’re waiting for an appointment. You can download free or paid […]

Review: The Complete Arkangel Shakespeare on CD

Buy from Amazon.com | Amazon UK | Amazon FR

“We might be better off with public readings of Shakespeare,” says Harold Bloom in Shakespeare: The Invention of the Human. “Ideally, of course, Shakespeare should be acted, but since he is now almost invariably poorly directed and inadequately played, it might be better to hear him well than see him badly.” Not being able to judge the quality of current Shakespearean performances as the erudite Bloom, I suffer more from a dearth of Shakespeare here in the French countryside.

While we cannot always find such public readings, we can listen to recorded, dramatized versions of the plays, as with this set of Shakespeare’s 38 plays. With a cast of hundreds, most actors from the Royal Shakespeare Company, these works come alive through a skillful combination of reading, sound effects and music. As radio used to do when dramatizing works, the Arkangel set gives you the acting and the atmosphere. While one may be a bit irked by the “original” music, a sort of Coltrane-inspired Elizabethan music–why didn’t they use actual music of the period, including that composed for Shakespeare’s plays?–the overall production quality is about as good as it gets.

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