Monday, August 3, 2009

The remarkable thing about Shakespeare is that he is really very good - in spite of all the people who say he is very good. (Robert Graves)

Other evidence that suggests my upbringing from my brothers was very different is the fact that my mother bought me the complete set of condensed Shakespeare Stories for Children, on 8 albums, no less. She also bought me The Littlest Camel Knelt, a Christmas story (on album, again) that I adored. I listened to these albums along with my brothers 45’s of Be My Baby, My Boyfriends Back and I Think We’re Alone Now ad nauseam. But the Shakespeare recordings (and I still have them) I loved beyond anything. It isn’t every little girl that has her Ken doll say to Barbie “Customs curtsy before great kings”.

Ld gave me a most perfect birthday Friday night as he (cheerfully, almost!) sat through Henry V at the Shakespeare Festival with me. It was a wonderful performance. I was delighted to discover that the actor who played King Henry (Brian Vaughn) was the same one who played Hamlet a couple of years back. Kenzie and I first saw him then and he was/is incredible.

Ld kept his comments to a fair minimum while I reveled. Still, I know it was painful for him and I really appreciated his efforts. He does not love Shakespeare at all, but he does love me.

And in answer to his query What makes Shaky-spear so hot, huh?, there’s this for starters:

Depth of wit.
Creative with language.
Depth of psychological insight.
Relevance of subject, you know, like, uh, all things human and divine.
Breadth of subject: tragic to comic/good to evil.
Stands the test of time, etc…

Perhaps ld, if you had been given a little Shakespeare on LP when you were but a boy, then maybe Friday night would not have been so torturous for you. And then maybe, just maybe, I wouldn’t have to anticipate watching all 6 hours of Lonesome Dove with you on your birthday;).

Seriously, ld, it was a great birthday. Thanky.

Oh. Some linky love, as Shaky-spear is meant to be performed. Don’t read it people, rather see it/hear it:

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