Today we made the trip to Stratford-upon-Avon, to visit the birthplace of William Shakespeare, as well as to see his play “Hamlet” at the RSC (Royal Shakespeare Company).
William Shakespeare’s birthplace was so cool- with costumed actors and educators inside the building, I really got a sense of the times he lived in. I learned a lot of interesting facts about Bill S. and his life;
- William Shakespeare’s father, John, made and sold leather gloves (he made his own leather). His son obviously didn’t follow his father’s career path, but he does reference a lot of his father’s trade in several of his plays.
- Charles Dickens and other writers lead a campaign to save Shakespeare’s home in 1847, when it was purchased for 3,000 pounds by public subscription.
- William was the 3rd of 8 little Shakespeare’s.
- In 1582 he married Anne Hathaway and they had three children; two of whom (Susanna and Judith both married, but Hamnet didn’t)
- Shakespeare’s writing career spanned from 1589 to 1613- 24 years of writing! (that is if my math skills are on point)
After that, we went to the RSC to see a production of Hamlet. This was a modern interpretation, starring Paapa Essiedu as Hamlet. I really, really, really loved this version of my favorite tragedy ever written by Shakespeare, and found every actor to be FANTASTIC! The only thing that I noticed was that after Polonius was killed (spoiler alert), I saw his hand move twice! And I saw him breathe- though I suppose there isn’t much he can do about that. Otherwise, I LOVED it- it certainly did justice to the Bard!
After a long day of traveling, with a total of about 6h on the train/tubes, I’m ready for bed!