Saturday, April 02, 2011
I saw a wonderful production of King Lear last night at the Royal Shakespeare Company Theatre in Stratford. The production was so exciting that a man in the audience sitting opposite me, fainted when Gloucester's eyes were put out.
But despite loving the theatre, I was nearly lost to Shakespeare in my teens, because I'd been bored to distraction by enforced attendance at Shakespeare productions when I was too young to understand the language and hadn’t even had an introduction to the plot of the play. So my first few years as a student in London I bought tickets for every kind of theatrical production apart from Shakespeare.
Luckily, a friend took me to see Ian McKellan in 'Corialanus' and I was electrified by the production, and completely fell in love with Shakespeare. So if any of you have been following Jamie's Dream School, do you think Simon Callow is right to start with Shakespeare to engage school drop-outs?