Make a Donation

Consider making a donation to support SHAKSPER.

Subscribe to Our Feeds

Current Postings RSS

Announcements RSS

Home :: Archive :: 2009 :: February ::
Shakespeare by Heart
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 20.0071  Friday, 20 February 2009

From:      Brian Bixley <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 >
Date:      Thursday, 19 Feb 2009 10:43:10 -0500
Subject:   Shakespeare by Heart

Last summer I was able to see at Stratford, Ontario, Simon Callow's 
_There Reigns Love_, his 'performance' of a selection of the Sonnets. 
I'm not sure exactly how many he recited during the performance, 
certainly not all of them, but an impressive memory feat just the same.

Paul Edmonson and Stanley Wells (Shakespeare's Sonnets) describe "an 
Amsterdam stand-up comedian, William Sutton" who "created his own 
one-man Sonnet show. It took him four years to learn the collection by 
heart." Helen Vendler (The Art of Shakespeare's Sonnets) tells us that 
"to arrive at the understandings proposed in my Commentary, I found it 
necessary to learn the Sonnets by heart."

I recently read that Ted Hughes knew "all of Yeats" by heart, a claim 
about which it would be easy to be skeptical. In Fiona MacCarthy's 
Byron, it is written of Lady Jane Harlow, the sixteen year-old daughter 
of Lady Oxford, that "She could recite the entire works of Shakespeare 
by heart." No evidence is provided for this claim. Is the claim credible?

_______________________________________________________________
S H A K S P E R: The Global Shakespeare Discussion List
Hardy M. Cook, 
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 
The S H A K S P E R Web Site <http://www.shaksper.net>

DISCLAIMER: Although SHAKSPER is a moderated discussion list, the 
opinions expressed on it are the sole property of the poster, and the 
editor assumes no responsibility for them.
 

©2011 Hardy Cook. All rights reserved.