Feb 282021

February 28, 2021

Jim and Gerritt celebrate ten years of The State of Shakespeare.  We listen to some of our most memorable guests from the early days of the podcast and share our favorite moments from the past decade.

Dec 122020

The Taming of the Shrew: Act 4, Scene 3

December 13, 2020

As a young “bookworm,” she fell in love with Shakespeare’s intoxicating language.   But after an early career playing Shakespeare’s romantic ingenues, Susan Heyward began to wonder whether modern theatre’s relationship with Shakespeare is as healthy as it once seemed.  Is it time to break up and explore “language affairs with other playwrights”?

Oct 212020

Bob Dylan and William Shakespeare:
The True Performing of It.

October 25, 2020

Author and scholar Andrew Muir is fascinated with two poets: one “the greatest artist of all time” and another “the most important artist since the second World War.”  They may have more in common than mere verses can express.  His latest book “Dylan & Shakespeare: The True Performing of It” explores why. From live performances to influencing genres to the “instability of revered verse”, Muir has spent a lifetime studying the two Bards. And it is so much more than words, words, words.

For more information on Dylan and Shakespeare: The True Performing of It, Click here.

Sep 302020

Richard III: Act 1, Scene 2
Richard, Duke of Gloucester
September 30, 2020

Words, words, words. Milan Dragicevich is fascinated by what he calls “the verbal surface” – a place where rhetoric lies and where you will take your voice to the borders of your personality. Milan believes that rhetoric is not just the art of persuasion but a chance to contribute to something bigger than ourselves.

Click here to follow along with the text.

Click here for a scanned version of the text.

Aug 252020

King Lear: Act 2, Scene 2

August 28, 2020

He is neither a knave, beggar or a coward, but rather a champion of the Bard! Paul Sugarman has been working with Shakespeare his whole life. Most recently, he is bringing Shakespeare to life with the Instant Shakespeare Company. In this rousing interview, Mr. Sugarman discusses his company, using the First Folio and Shakespearean insults.

Click here to follow along with the text.

Click here for a First Folio version of the text.

Jun 302020

Henry VI, Part III: Act 1, Scene 4
Queen Margaret
June 30, 2020

In our first interview recorded during the Covid-19 era, we caught up with Shirine Babb, whose production of Timon of Athens at the Shakespeare Theatre of DC was abruptly interrupted in March, 2020.  Before “quarantine” and “social distancing” and “Zoom” were household words we were just beginning to grasp the impact of the sudden shuttering of our theatres.  Shirine shares her thoughts on how to survive the times, the production of Timon of Athens and shares Queen Margaret’s infamous speech from Henry VI, Part 3.

Click here to follow along with the text.

Click here for a First Folio version of the text.

Click here for a scanned version of the text.

May 312020

How to Think Like Shakespeare
May 31, 2020


What can we learn about the state of modern education by taking a look back at how young pupils were schooled during Shakespeare’s day?   Our guest Scott Newstok shares some collected wisdom from his book How to Think Like Shakespeare, which has us wondering: when education policy makers prioritize standardized testing, digital instruction and virtual learning environments over more traditional methods, could today’s students be losing more than they are gaining?  

Click here to visit Scott Newstok’s webpage.

Apr 162020

The L.A. Subway Shakespeare Project
April 15, 2020

What do John Cassavettes, August Wilson and the Three Stooges have in common?  They all inspired Hassan Jamal to create the LA Subway Shakespeare Project.  Hassan films short Shakespeare scenes in and around the LA Subways, all in one take, all on the go.  Part street theater, part guerilla film, the LASSP is a unique vision in the Shakespearean landscape. Give a listen, then give a look!

Click here to visit the LA Subway Shakespeare Project Site.

Here is a sample, from Titus Andronicus:

Feb 232020

The Play On Project

February 20, 2020

Kenneth Cavender said, translations are like lovers.  The faithful ones aren’t beautiful, the beautiful ones aren’t faithful. Dave Hitz is putting this quote to the test with his ambitious Play On! Project – translating all of Shakespeare’s plays to modern English. Mr. Hitz makes a compelling argument for the project, one that has stirred controversy wherever it goes.

Click here to visit the Play On! Site.

Jan 292020

Dave Hitz, co-founder of the Play On Project, has a very specific view when it comes to the idea of translation. Is the Play On Project a translation of Shakespeare? Full Interview coming soon!

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