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I Love (& Hate) Shakespeare

In my undergrad, I took great pride in the fact that I avoided taking a Shakespeare class. For most students, fulfilling our "Early Modern" requirements obviously included a course in the Great One's plays. But I refused on principle. I believed (and still do) that it is possible to have a well-rounded English Literature degree without studying Shakespeare. He may be great, but he is not the be-all and end-all of literary history. In essence, my "hatred" (too mild to even be called that) of Shakespeare lies in his immense popularity & influence, and my little rebellious self saying, Psshht.

Oh, and his tragedies are depressing. As tragedies ought to be. But I usually favour the happy endings.

My love of Shakespeare is that he is highly entertaining, and really quite brilliant. The fact that over four hundred years later, people laugh and cry at his words is... something.



This is all an unnecessarily long intro to my review of Comedy of Errors, performed by Bard on the Beach last night. To be succinct, these are my thoughts:

  1. Ryan Beil makes me laugh like no one else. I don't know why, but he does.
  2. Anachronisms, adaptations and additions to Shakespeare don't bother me - but a failure to keep the added dialogue Elizabethan does.
  3. I often forget that Shakespeare is quite crude at times.
  4. Live theatre makes me giddy.
  5. Standing ovations should be saved for the rarest of occasions. Otherwise, they lose their meaning.

Comments

Deepak said…
I love Comedy of Errors. It was the first Shakespeare play I ever saw, when I was 12.
Beth said…
really! i've never read or seen it before this week. but i quite enjoyed it.

also, i'm glad you're in the blogosphere - one more way to stay in touch :)

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