show episodes
 
The Play's the Thing is the ultimate podcast resource for lovers of Shakespeare. Dedicating six episodes to each play (one per act, plus a Q&A episode), this podcast explores the themes, scenes, characters, and lines that make Shakespeare so memorable. In the end, we will cover every play The Bard wrote, thus permitting an ongoing contemplation and celebration of the most important writer of all time. Join us. The Play’s the Thing is presented by The CiRCE Podcast Network. See acast.com/priv ...
 
Theatre professionals, artists, vloggers and other guests from around the world join resident Shakespeare Birthplace Trust experts Paul and Anjna to discuss Shakespeare's place in the 21st century. We hear about their relationships with Shakespeare in the modern world and take a fresh look at Shakespeare in today's society.
 
Shakespeare's Sonnets, or simply The Sonnets, comprise a collection of 154 poems in sonnet form written by William Shakespeare that deal with such themes as love, beauty, politics, and mortality. The poems were probably written over a period of several years. (Summary from wikipedia)
 
William Shakespeare (April 26, 1564 – April 23, 1616) remains widely to be considered the single greatest playwright of all time. He wrote in such a variety of genres - tragedy, comedy, romance, &c - that there is always at least one monologue in each of his plays. Some of these teach a lesson, some simply characterize Shakespeare at his best, some are funny, some sad, but all are very moving. Each monologue will touch everybody differently. Some people will be so moved by a particular monol ...
 
This personal anthology is my choice of speeches from Shakespeare that I enjoy reading (that I would like to have had by heart years ago!) and that seem to me to illustrate his unsurpassed use of language. He was a man who seemed to know everything about human nature and as Orson Welles said ‘he speaks to everyone and we all claim him’. I know that it has been said that ‘it is impossible to be a great Shakespearian actor without an idiosyncratic and extraordinary voice’ and this may be so, b ...
 
Shakespeare's pastoral comedy was written and first performed around 1599, and presents some of his familiar motifs: a cross-dressing heroine, a wise-cracking fool, brothers usurping their brothers' power, a journey from the court to the country, and various romantic entanglements. (Summary by Elizabeth Klett)CastOrlando: Arielle LipshawAdam/Hymen: Kevin GreenOliver/Le Beau/First Lord/First Page: ToddTouchstone/Dennis/First Lord/Forester: KristingjCharles/Second Lord/Jaques de Boys: Algy Pug ...
 
Antony and Cleopatra is a tragedy by William Shakespeare, believed to have been written sometime between 1603 and 1607. It was first printed in the First Folio of 1623. The plot is based on Thomas North's translation of Plutarch's Life of Marcus Antonius and follows the relationship between Cleopatra and Mark Antony from the time of the Parthian War to Cleopatra's suicide. The major antagonist is Octavius Caesar, one of Antony's fellow triumviri and the future first emperor of Rome. The trag ...
 
Generally considered one of Shakespeare's problem plays, Measure for Measure examines the ideas of sin and justice. Duke Vincentio turns Vienna's rule over to the corrupt Angelo, who sentences Claudio to death for having impregnated a woman before marriage. His sister Isabella, a novice nun, pleads for her brother's life, only to be told that he will be spared if she agrees to relinquish her virginity to Angelo. (Summary by wildemoose) Cast: Abhorson: John D. Nugent Angelo: Roger Clifton Bar ...
 
Created by Independent Shakespeare Co., Art Break is a living link between Los Angeles & its theater community. The podcast extends conversations about universal truths in Shakspeare's plays, theatrical performance, & relevant social issues beyond the stage, into the digital-auditory scape through storytelling, discussion, & social action. As theater’s societal role is reimagined, how do our priorities change as theatremakers? How do we serve the LA community when we’re forced to stay apart? ...
 
Romeo and Juliet is perhaps the most famous of Shakespeare’s plays and is thought to be the most famous love story in Western history. It concerns the fate of two very young lovers who would do anything to be together. The Montagues and the Capulets of Verona, Italy, are in the midst of a long-standing feud when Romeo Montague drops in on a masquerade party at the Capulets’. While there he meets and woos the daughter of the house, Juliet. She likewise returns his passion, and their secret me ...
 
Cymbeline is one of Shakespeare's late romances, which (like The Tempest and The Winter's Tale) combines comedy and tragedy. Imogen, the daughter of King Cymbeline of Britain, angers her father when she marries Posthumus, a worthy but penniless gentleman. The King banishes Posthumus, who goes to Rome, where he falls prey to the machinations of Iachimo, who tries to convince him that Imogen will be unfaithful. Meanwhile, the Queen (Imogen's stepmother) plots against her stepdaughter by trying ...
 
Hamlet is commonly regarded as one of the greatest plays ever written. Drawing on Danish chronicles and the Elizabethan vogue for revenge tragedy, Shakespeare created a play that is at once a philosophic treatise, a family drama, and a supernatural thriller. In the wake of his father's death, Prince Hamlet finds that his Uncle Claudius has swiftly taken the throne and married his mother, Queen Gertrude. The ghost of the dead king then appears and charges Claudius with 'murder most foul.' Ham ...
 
The Tragedy of Hamlet, Prince of Denmark is a tragedy by William Shakespeare. Set in the Kingdom of Denmark, the play dramatizes the revenge Prince Hamlet exacts on his uncle Claudius for murdering King Hamlet, Claudius's brother and Prince Hamlet's father, and then succeeding to the throne and taking as his wife Gertrude, the old king's widow and Prince Hamlet's mother. The play vividly portrays both true and feigned madness – from overwhelming grief to seething rage – and explores themes o ...
 
Henry VI, Part 1 is a history play by William Shakespeare, believed to have been written in 1591, and set during the lifetime of King Henry VI of England. Whereas 2 Henry VI deals with the King's inability to quell the bickering of his nobles, and the inevitability of armed conflict, and 3 Henry VI deals with the horrors of that conflict, 1 Henry VI deals with the loss of England's French territories and the political machinations leading up to the Wars of the Roses, as the English political ...
 
Despite its optimistic title, Shakespeare's All's Well That Ends Well has often been considered a "problem play." Ostensibly a comedy, the play also has fairy tale elements, as it focuses on Helena, a virtuous orphan, who loves Bertram, the haughty son of her protectress, the Countess of Rousillon. When Bertram, desperate for adventure, leaves Rousillon to serve in the King's army, Helena pursues him.
 
Shakespeare was passionately interested in the history of Rome, as is evident from plays like Titus Andronicus, Julius Caesar, and Antony and Cleopatra. His tragedy Coriolanus was probably written around 1605-07, and dramatizes the rise and fall of a great Roman general, Caius Martius (later surnamed Coriolanus because of his military victory at Corioli). This play is unusual in that it provides a strong voice for the ordinary citizens of Rome, who begin the play rioting about the high price ...
 
This is the second LibriVox collection of scenes from Shakespeare's plays, mainly comprising dialogues between two characters. The theme for this collection is "Women's Worlds," as the excerpts are all scenes between female characters. (Summary by Elizabeth Klett) Coriolanus, Act 1 Scene 3 read by: Duan, Martin Geeson, Caprisha Page Love's Labor's Lost, Act 5 Scene 2 read by: Duan, Amanda Friday, Elizabeth Klett, Caprisha Page Much Ado About Nothing, Act 3 Scene 1 read by: Verity Kendall, Am ...
 
Cymbeline is one of Shakespeare's late romances, which (like The Tempest and The Winter's Tale) combines comedy and tragedy. Imogen, the daughter of King Cymbeline of Britain, angers her father when she marries Posthumus, a worthy but penniless gentleman. The King banishes Posthumus, who goes to Rome, where he falls prey to the machinations of Iachimo, who tries to convince him that Imogen will be unfaithful. Meanwhile, the Queen (Imogen's stepmother) plots against her stepdaughter by trying ...
 
The Merry Wives of Windsor is a comedy by William Shakespeare, first published in 1602, though believed to have been written prior to 1597. It features the fat knight Sir John Falstaff, and is Shakespeare's only play to deal exclusively with contemporary Elizabethan era English middle class life. (Summary by Wikipedia)Cast:Anne Page, Mistress Page's daughter: Elizabeth BarrBardolph, sharper attending on Falstaff: AlanDoctor Caius, a French physician: Marty KrisFalstaff: Mark F. SmithFenton, ...
 
After the turmoil and uncertainty of Henry IV a new era appears to dawn for England with the accession of the eponymous Henry V. In this sunny pageant, the Chorus guides us along Henry's glittering carpet ride of success as the new king completes his transformation from rebellious wastrel to a truly regal potentate. Of course, there is an underlying feeling that the good times won't last, and this is all the more reason to enjoy the Indian summer before the protracted and bitter fall of the ...
 
Written around the middle of his career, Much Ado About Nothing is one of Shakespeare's great festive comedies. The men are back from the war, and everyone is ready for romance. The dashing young Claudio falls for Hero, the daughter of Leonato, governor of Messina, and his friend Don Pedro helps him secure her affection. These youthful lovers are contrasted with the more experienced (and more cynical) Benedick and Beatrice, who have to be tricked into falling in love. Don Pedro's bastard bro ...
 
Antony and Cleopatra is a tragedy by William Shakespeare, believed to have been written sometime between 1603 and 1607. It was first printed in the First Folio of 1623. The plot is based on Thomas North's translation of Plutarch's Life of Marcus Antonius and follows the relationship between Cleopatra and Mark Antony from the time of the Parthian War to Cleopatra's suicide. The major antagonist is Octavius Caesar, one of Antony's fellow triumviri and the future first emperor of Rome. The trag ...
 
The Tragedy of Hamlet, Prince of Denmark is a tragedy by William Shakespeare. Set in the Kingdom of Denmark, the play dramatizes the revenge Prince Hamlet exacts on his uncle Claudius for murdering King Hamlet, Claudius's brother and Prince Hamlet's father, and then succeeding to the throne and taking as his wife Gertrude, the old king's widow and Prince Hamlet's mother. The play vividly portrays both true and feigned madness – from overwhelming grief to seething rage – and explores themes o ...
 
The Comedy of Errors tells the story of two sets of identical twins that were accidentally separated at birth. Antipholus of Syracuse and his servant, Dromio of Syracuse, arrive in Ephesus, which turns out to be the home of their twin brothers, Antipholus of Ephesus and his servant, Dromio of Ephesus. When the Syracusans encounter the friends and families of their twins, a series of wild mishaps based on mistaken identities lead to wrongful beatings, a near-seduction, the arrest of Antipholu ...
 
This is truly a delightful compilation of some of the best known and loved passages from William Shakespeare's plays. Most readers would be familiar with all or at least some of them. If you've studied Shakespeare in school or college, plays like The Merchant of Venice and Macbeth were probably assigned texts. However, if you haven't encountered these plays before, Shakespeare Monologues is a great volume to browse through and enjoy at leisure. It's important to know that there is a distinct ...
 
William Shakespeare's The Merchant of Venice was probably written between 1596 and 1598, and was printed with the comedies in the First Folio of 1623. Bassanio, an impoverished gentleman, uses the credit of his friend, the merchant Antonio, to borrow money from a wealthy Jew, Shylock. Antonio pledges to pay Shylock a pound of flesh if he defaults on the loan, which Bassanio will use to woo a rich heiress, Portia. A subplot concerns the elopement of Shylock's daughter Jessica with a Christian ...
 
Macbeth is a play written by William Shakespeare. It is considered one of his darkest and most powerful tragedies. Set in Scotland, the play dramatizes the corroding psychological and political effects produced when its protagonist, the Scottish lord Macbeth, chooses evil as the way to fulfill his ambition for power. He commits regicide to become king and then furthers his moral descent with a reign of murderous terror to stay in power, eventually plunging the country into civil war. In the ...
 
Pericles, Prince of Tyre is a Jacobean play written at least in part by William Shakespeare and included in modern editions of his collected works despite questions over its authorship, as it was not included in the First Folio. Modern editors generally agree that Shakespeare is responsible for almost exactly half the play—827 lines—the main portion after scene 9 that follows the story of Pericles and Marina. Modern textual studies indicate that the first two acts of 835 lines detailing the ...
 
After the turmoil and uncertainty of Henry IV a new era appears to dawn for England with the accession of the eponymous Henry V. In this sunny pageant Chorus guides us along Henry's glittering carpet ride of success as the new king completes his transformation from rebellious wastrel to a truly regal potentate. Of course, there is an underlying feeling that the good times won't last, and this is all the more reason to enjoy the Indian summer before the protracted and bitter fall of the house ...
 
William Shakespeare’s most well-known play is more than most people realize. While it is the story of star-crossed lovers, Romeo and Juliet, it is also the story of two families in the middle of a bitter feud. Many people avoid the story because they believe it will be too difficult to read, but this is not true at all. Within a few paragraphs, the play captures your imagination and attention. Juliet is 13 years old and is love with the son of her father’s enemy. Her father has promised that ...
 
Summer nights, romance, music, comedy, pairs of lovers who have yet to confess their feelings to each other, comedy and more than a touch of magic are all woven into one of Shakespeare's most delightful and ethereal creations – A Midsummer Night's Dream. The plot is as light and enchanting as the settings themselves. The Duke of Athens is busy with preparations for his forthcoming wedding to Hippolyta the Amazonian Queen. In the midst of this, Egeus, an Athenian aristocrat marches in, flanke ...
 
King Henry IV, Part 1 is the second of Shakespeare’s eight Wars of the Roses history plays, with events following those of King Richard II. As the play opens, King Henry IV (formerly Henry Bolingbroke) and Henry Percy (Hotspur) argue over the disposition of prisoners from the Battle of Holmedon. The King’s attitude toward Mortimer and the Percy family prompts them to plot rebellion. In the meantime, his son Prince Hal is living the low life in the company of Sir John Falstaff. As the time of ...
 
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show series
 
William Braford is most well known today as the man who served as the second governor of Plymouth Colony, leaving Europe for Virginia in 1620 aboard the Mayflower. Prior to this infamous voyage, Bradford was an Englishman whose life overlapped that of William Shakespeare, having been born in Yorkshire, England, when Shakespeare was 26 years old. Th…
 
S3E42 In the final Part of Henry VI, we see England descend fully into chaos. Today we discuss violence, ill-blowing winds and the rise of one of Shakespeare's most famous villains. Joining Ash once again are Hailey Bachrach and Owen Horsley, who have worked on adaptations of the plays for the Globe and the RSC. Selections for the play are read by …
 
Let me not to the marriage of true minds Admit impediments; love is not love Which alters when it alteration finds, Or bends with the remover to remove. O no, it is an ever-fixed mark That looks on tempests and is never shaken; It is the star to every wand'ring bark, Whose worth's unknown, although his highth be taken. Love's not Time's fool, thoug…
 
It's finally time to discuss the grandaddy of all of Shakespeare's plays! That's right, it's time for Hamlet and Tim, Heidi, and special guest Andrew Kern are ready to dig deep. In this episode they discuss why this play matters so much, the initial structure of the play, the themes and problems Act I introduces, and much more. See acast.com/privac…
 
In July's Community Action Update, ISC's Artistic Associate for Social Justice, Carene Mekertichyan, invites you to support our unhoused neighbors with Water Drop LA, take part in La Defensa’s “Rate My Judge” program, join Justice LA’s efforts for criminal justice reform, and other ways YOU can stay active in the fight for social justice and equity…
 
Directors Adam Blanford and Jeff Robinson, and dramaturg Morgan Z. Sowell with live commentary on Pericles, Prince of Tyre Act II! --Please leave us a rating on Apple Podcasts!-- Website: pendantaudio.com Twitter: @pendantweb Facebook: facebook.com/pendantaudio Tumblr: pendantaudio.tumblr.com YouTube: youtube.com/pendantproductions…
 
One of Shakespeare's lesser-known plays, Timon of Athens (aka "How to Make Friends and Alienate People") may not be his most engaging yarn -- being co-authored by Thomas Middleton strikes your humble podcasters as one potential reason why -- but that doesn't mean that it can't be relatable and interesting, or that it won't resonate with modern life…
 
Portraits of ladies and gentlemen from the late 16th century show men and women adorned in all manner of finery, including everything from flowing gowns, to magnificent swords, and even those infamous Tudor ruff collars,but what exactly did it take to get into all those fine outfits? When Shakespeare surveyed his closet in the morning before he got…
 
Those lines that I before have writ do lie, Even those that said I could not love you dearer, Yet then my judgment knew no reason why My most full flame should afterwards burn clearer. But reckoning Time, whose million'd accidents Creep in 'twixt vows, and change decrees of kings, Tan sacred beauty, blunt the sharp'st intents, Divert strong minds t…
 
S3E46 Ash is joined once again by Andrew Lycett to talk more about Arthur Conan Doyle - his spiritualism, his global politics and his round of golf with Rudyard Kipling. To find out more about Andrew's work click below: Amazon.co.uk : andrew lycett Title Music: 'Not Drunk' by The Joy Drops. All other music by Epidemic Sound. www.patreon.com/earread…
 
S3E45 Conan Doyle's historical novel The White Company is today's subject of discussion; another of Edinburgh's most famous literary residents tackling material previously used by Shakespeare. A tale of a ragtag gang of archers in the Hundred Year's War, The White Company was once the most widely published historical novel after Ivanhoe. So why is …
 
When we study court in Shakespeare history the phrase “appeared at court” or “performed at court” frequently gets used to describe what Shakespeare was doing at various points of his life. However, the overlap between “court” legally (as in, where you go for a legal trial) and the social phenomenon of Renaissance England where the monarch gathered …
 
S3E44 A fascinating conversation today that's a must-listen for all Stevenson enthusiasts. Ash talks more to Jeremy Hodges about Stevenson's time in Paris, the damaging influence of Victorian Edinburgh and the story of Katharine de Mattos. Katharine was Stevenson's cousin and fellow author, who Jeremy has written about in his latest book, Mrs Jekyl…
 
S3E43 We're taking a break from Shakespeare but not from the Wars of the Roses. Today we look at another portrait of the civil war in Robert Louis Stevenson's The Black Arrow. Joining Ash to talk about this lesser known novel by RLS is journalist and author Jeremy Hodges. Tune in next time to hear more about Jeremy's work. You can read his biograph…
 
Much like many of our modern stories, Shakespeare used the family as the core of many of his tales, so we dove into the many vagaries of families in Shakespeare's plays to see what made them tick. What was the family "supposed" to look like in Elizabethan times, and how did Shakespeare play with that idea? Which plays feature the most damaged famil…
 
When William Shakespeare first arrived in London sometime in the 1580s, James Burbage was already making waves in the early modern performance industry by establishing The Theater, a playhouse which the Burbages owned. After a fight with the owner of the land on which The Theater was built, the building itself would be dismantled by the Burbages an…
 
In the 1950s when Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet was adapted into West Side Story, popular culture in the US resonated with the gang culture and street fighting depicted on stage because the brass knuckled “rumbles” taking place on streets like those in New York City were current events of the day. Turns out, historically, these gang fights were a …
 
Or whether doth my mind being crown'd with you Drink up the monarch's plague, this flattery? Or whether shall I say mine eye saith true, And that your love taught it this alcumy, To make of monsters and things indigest Such cherubins as your sweet self resemble, Creating every bad a perfect best As fast as objects to his beams assemble? O, 'tis the…
 
Directors Jeff Robinson and Adam Blanford, and dramaturg Morgan Z. Sowell with live commentary on Pericles, Prince of Tyre Act I! --Please leave us a rating on Apple Podcasts!-- Website: pendantaudio.com Twitter: @pendantweb Facebook: facebook.com/pendantaudio Tumblr: pendantaudio.tumblr.com YouTube: youtube.com/pendantproductions…
 
Who has three daughters, two thumbs, and one inheritance to distribute? That guy! *pointing at King Lear* That simple premise becomes the source for one of Shakespeare's most well known and tragic plays. It's also a strangely unsatisfying journey into family dysfunction and moral dilemma, so join us as we chat about the characters, themes, and stru…
 
It seems even William Shakespeare had household floors to keep clean. While it likely wouldn’t have been the actual William doing the majority of the sweeping in his household, one item the bard seems to have been familiar with through his nineteen uses of the word “sweep” and one use of the word “besom” across his works is the household broom used…
 
Since I left you, mine eye is in my mind, And that which governs me to go about Doth part his function, and is partly blind, Seems seeing, but effectually is out; For it no form delivers to the heart Of bird, of flow'r, or shape which it doth latch, Of his quick objects hath the mind no part, Nor his own vision holds what it doth catch; For if it s…
 
John Philip Sousa's The Stars and Stripes Forever is the official march of the United States of America. Sousa composed his most famous march in his head when he was on a ship coming back from a trip to Europe with his band. When the ship docked, he put the march down on paper and named it after the American flag he was so glad to see when he got h…
 
Happy Pride Month! In June's Community Action Update, ISC's Artistic Associate for Social Justice, Carene Mekertichyan, invites you to donate to your favorite LGBTQIA2S+ organizations including the Los Angeles LGBT Center and the Trans Defense Fund, take action to Save the San Marcos Foothills, urge your assembly member to support the VISION Act, a…
 
In Cymbeline, Act I Scene 1 Posthumus Leonatus says “I’ll drink the words you send though ink be made of gall” and in Twelfth Night Sir Toby Belch calls attention to a particular kind of ink when he says “Let there be gall enough in thy ink, though thou write with a goose-pen…” in Act III Scene 2. Both of these scenes from Shakespeare’s plays are r…
 
Your love and pity doth th' impression fill Which vulgar scandal stamp'd upon my brow, For what care I who calls me well or ill, So you o'er-green my bad, my good allow? You are my all the world, and I must strive To know my shames and praises from your tongue; None else to me, nor I to none alive, That my steel'd sense or changes right or wrong. I…
 
This is a very special episode dedicated to the era most near and dear to (at least one of) us: the 90s. It was an era that kicked off with parachute pants and Kurt Cobain, and ended with Friends at the top of the ratings chart and Beyoncé still a member of Destiny's Child. In-between there were a whole lot of Shakespeare movies, so we gathered tog…
 
Shakespeare mentions the word “crocodile” five times in his plays, but crocodiles not being native to England must have been introduced to the bard from outside his natural habitat there in London. The crocodile itself was well known in English literature, having been written about in association with Egypt and Africa by writers like Pliny the Elde…
 
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