Wednesday, April 23, 2014

THE BIRTH AND DEATH OF WILLIAM SHAKESPEARE We Celebrate 450 Years: April 1564-April 201

Historians believe that the great playwright and poet was born on this day in 1564. He also died on this date, April 23rd, in 1616. There some who insist that his birth be celebrated on the 26th, because there is a baptismal certificate for that day, although there is no birth record. Regardless, today we honor the great William Shakespeare, for his words and characters live on.

William Shakespeare

To celebrate and honor Shakespeare, I'm going to post a newly recorded monologue or scene each Saturday here at AN ACTOR'S NOTEBOOK. Look for posts headlined SHAKESPEARE SATURDAYS for my recordings, and for articles and stories about The Bard, along with each recording..

I think Shakespeare is best when you can HEAR him performed (and even better to see AND hear!), so I've selected a wide ranging and eclectic series of speeches that I've recorded, and I hope you like them.

They were fun to record, and allowed me to think about characters and plays I hadn't performed in years, or look at old favorites anew, and play some characters I missed earlier in my career.

To start things off, here is Prospero's epilogue, spoken at the end of THE TEMPEST. One of Shakespeare's last plays, this monologue is rather fitting to hear on the anniversary of The Bard's death, as Prospero is surely giving up his magic and creativity and letting his every "third thought" be of his own death...This monologue, in many ways, is about endings then, and about beginnings, much like the play THE TEMPEST itself.

For your indulgence and pleasure, I submit most humbly,

-Mark Redfield
23 April, 2014

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