This week has been an eventful Shakespeare week so I'll get right to it:
From the Shakespeare Almanac:
- On March 10, 1613, Shakespeare bought an apartment in Blackfriars; his first London property.
- On March 11, 1574, Shakespeare's second brother, Richard, was christened. Shakespeare was nearly ten.
Shakespeare sightings (back to a more normal number):
- In John O'Farrell's An Utterly Impartial History of Britain, or 2000 years of Upper Class Idiots in Charge the author agrees with me that Richard II is “excellent and underrated” (and I don't think he's joking – sometimes it's hard to tell) and he later points out that much of what Shakespeare wrote about in his history plays is, in fact, history.
- In DN it emerges in a long interview that Ben Kingsley was with the Royal Shakespeare Company for many years. Well, of course he was. An actor of his stature? What did you expect?
- In the grim but fascinating based-on-fact movie Exonerated, one of the falsely accused prisoners got through some rough prison time by reading Shakespeare.
- In a cultural manifestation of an entirely different kind, the novel Second Coming by John Niven, God thinks things are going pretty well on Earth, what with King Lear having premiered on the London stage, so he figures he can afford to take a vacation for a few hundred Earth years. Well, you've heard the expression all hell breaking loose...You don't have to read this book just because it mentions Shakespeare though. It's macho and childish and not nearly as funny as it should be.
- With Kalle's help (thanks, Kalle!) our first ever Shakespeare-and-electromagnetism sighting on a really interesting website ocw.mit.edu on which Professor Walter Lewin explains that the name 'displacement current' isn't as important as the phenomenon itself. He goes on to add: “...after all Shakespeare said it himself in Romeo and Juliet: what's in a name?... a rose by any other name would smell as sweet...”
Further, this week:
- Finished reading aloud with Hal: The Merchant of Venice.
- Watched: the BBC version.
- Started writing: my text on it.
- Now reading aloud with Hal: the many analyses of it, including Bloom's.
- Still waiting for from Amazon: In the Bleak Midwinter and Shakespeare Wallah.
- Written and sent, after a series of emails with website co-creator James Harriman-Smith: An introduction to The Comedy of Errors to be posted on the very interesting Open Shakespeare http://openshakespeare.org/ There is a wealth of Shakespeare material on this site. Check it out!
- Posted: only this.