early televised shakespeare

(Currently the idea is that) My doctoral research will look at Shakespeare performance history, focusing on stage performances of the Late Plays from about the 1860 to about 1933. I could go on, but the ideas are still as full of parentheses and italics as the King James Bible. But a post discussing television theatre before the war on the excellent Illuminations blog, makes me wonder how far I should include filmed performances. I’d thought about this in a leisurely way before, only been able to recollect one silent version of The Tempest (watched for interest, as an undergrad) and danced a mental jig, before shelving the thought again.

I’m not much further on (this post is just a placeholder), but reading John’s article made me realise how excited I am to be working on performance history in the first half of the twentieth century. Part of my Masters was a course on British Theatre 1850-1900 and 1950-2000, but 1900 (well, 1910-) to 1950 is something new. What I know so far hangs off (mostly) the later work of Terry, Achurch, Robbins and the Bensons – a heterogenous group.

Anyway, yes. It’s a sunny afternoon and I’ve spent it by the river, face-painted and reading stories to the under-5s, as part of the Stratford River Festival. Tomorrow, I’m going to see a friend perform his first Mass. My brain is enjoying a weekend off from work, and a chance to go ‘ooh, that’s interesting’ rather than dash between jobs. I’m also spring-cleaning and revisiting my teenage CD collection; without exception, anything that anyone could class as ‘good’ was burnt/bought for me by somebody else. This hasn’t changed.

P.S.: Happy Pride!

7 thoughts on “early televised shakespeare

      1. Actually, thinking about it, so do I – they get signed off the night before, and it’s unlikely they’d have The Big Six in on a Sunday night to do that. Mine came out on a Tues or Wed. Wouldn’t be surprised if it were tomorrow. FANCY A BET.


        1. Loathly worm that yoo are, profiting by the suffering of others!

          I’ve most often heard Weds suggested, but tomorrow wld be good because ma mere will not have left for Berlin yet.


        2. Latent gambling addict, you mean. Better loathly than VISIBLE.

          I love the image of you all standing round in smoky pubs muttering days & rumours at each other. What do you DO, just keep refreshing/checking emails? O DAYS OF YORE with you in QLCH.


  1. Sophie! I’m going to be in Stratford the week after next to see Julius Caesar at the RSC and walk the Shakespeare homes and museums. If you’re around and not busy with work, would be great to get a coffee or something?
    Ah, third year…. have to read Shakey’s collected works…

    hope you’re well, haven’t seen you in a long long time!
    x Sophia


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