Archive for August, 2013

Here are some highlights of Shakespeare productions in the city this fall:


  • Violent delights have violent ends for Orlando Bloom and Condola Rashad as Romeo and Juliet. Now Playing at the Richard Rodgers Theatre.  Educator and student tickets are $20.
  • Greatness is thrust upon Mark Rylance in Shakespeare’s Globe productions of Twelfth Night and Richard III. Previews begin Oct. 15 at the Belasco Theatre.  Tickets starting at $25.  See both plays in one day on select Wednesdays and Saturdays.
  • Double, double, toil and trouble finds Ethan Hawke in Macbeth. Previews begin Oct. 24 at Lincoln Center Theater.  Tickets starting at $77.
  • The course of true love leads to Brooklyn for Julie Taymor‘s production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream.  Performances begin Oct. 19 at TFANA’s new Center for Shakespeare and Classical Drama.  Ticket prices not yet available.

Ballet & Opera

  • Benjamin Britten‘s music forms a most rare vision of A Midsummer Night’s Dream for the Metropolitan Opera. Performances begin Oct. 11 at the Metropolitan Opera House.  Tickets starting at $25.
  • American Ballet Theater’s Alexei Ratmansky creates a Tempest at Lincoln Center. Performances begin Oct. 30 at the David H. Koch Theater. Tickets starting at $20.

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Two of the Bard’s plays, Love’s Labour’s Lost and The Tempest, have new musical adaptations premiering this summer at The Public Theater.  This isn’t the first time, though, that Shakespeare’s works have been set to music.  Other musical versions (some famous, some obscure) include:

  • The Boys from Syracuse (The Comedy of Errors)
  • The Donkey Show (A Midsummer Night’s Dream)
  • Kiss Me, Kate (The Taming of the Shrew)
  • Pop! (King Lear)
  • Rockabye Hamlet (Hamlet)
  • Two Gentlemen of Verona
  • West Side Story (Romeo and Juliet)
  • Your Own Thing (Twelfth Night)

Overall there have been more than twenty-five Shakespeare inspired musicals (and those are just the American ones)!  So why are the Bard’s works so popular as musical adaptations?  Tell us your thoughts…


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Sir Kenneth Branagh is to make his New York stage debut in a production of Macbeth performed at an army facility.

The play was previously staged in a deconsecrated church at the Manchester International Festival in July and co-starred Alex Kingston as Lady Macbeth.

The US show will take place in the 55,000 sq ft (5,100 sq m) drill hall at the Park Avenue Armory in June.


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IT’S A COMMON CLAIM of English classes and Internet listicles alike: William Shakespeare, English literature’s most canonical author, invented hundreds if not thousands of the words in our language. Without his plays and poems, we would not know how to swaggergrovel, or gossip, nor could we speak of ouremployers or our eyeballs—all, supposedly, Shakespearean coinages. From ten-dollar-words like quarrelsome and sanctimonious to everyday terms such ashint and critic, the bard is widely credited with adding immeasurably to our linguistic variety.


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Complete your summer with some interesting Shakespeare–

And please share–what worked?  what was too “fringe”? 

Who cares if he actually wrote everything that’s been attributed to him over the years? For theater companies and hungry actors looking to make their mark, the complete works of Shakespeare are an endless source of inspiration…and a challenge, when it comes to innovative presentation. These five productions benefit from wildly imaginative takes on oft-told tales. Let’s hope the execution matches the level of ambition.


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To be or not to be? You decide.

Shakespeare’s most famous question appears in Hamlet, but now readers will get to answer it themselves with Ryan North’s To Be Or Not To Be: That Is The Adventure, a “Choose Your Own Adventure”-style rewrite of Shakespeare’s classic play.


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Hamlet is Banned!

On Monday, I was sitting in the British Library frantically trying to write my new book in a shturmovshchina. I had to quickly check a particular line in Hamlet, so I Googled Hamlet MIT, because the Massachusetts Institute of Technology has put the entire works of Shakespeare up on the Internet. (It takes70 mins to order a physical book). I clicked on the link and…

A message came up from the British Library telling me that access to site was blocked due to “violent content”…

Read the rest of the article here – http://blog.inkyfool.com/2013/08/hamlet-is-banned.html

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