Posted on 27 April 2011

Simon Callow brings to life the real man in this one-man show, Being Shakespeare on at the Trafalgar Studios from 15th June to 23rd July.

According to his memoir My Life In Pieces, Simon Callow was just six years old when he "saw" his first Shakespeare play, which in reality was at the Berkshire school where his mother worked as a secretary where he listened, rapt, to a radio production of Macbeth that swirled with an eerie musical score. “The images conjured up, of battlements and blasted heaths, of witches and kings, of children murdered and dead men walking,” he recalls, “imprinted themselves on my brain and have never faded from it. A certain landscape, Shakespeare’s landscape, entered my consciousness, like a dream that is more vivid than experience itself.”

Now at the age of 61, Simon Callow brings a collection of Shakespeare's most memorable characters to the stage as it explores the man behind the world's most famous plays with a run at the Trafalgar Studios following a widely successful national tour

Previously entitled Shakespeare – The Man from Stratford, the piece was co-written by Jonathan Bates, Shakespeare biographer and editor of the RSC’s Shakespeare: The Complete Works.  His book, The Genius of Shakespeare (1997), is widely held as the best modern book on Shakespeare, and his most recent book, Soul of the Age: The Life, Mind and World of William Shakespeare, was published in 2009.

The piece is directed by Tom Cairns, whose previous credits include All About My Mother (Old Vic) and Aristocrats (National Theatre).

Simon Callow’s extensive theatre credits include Waiting for Godot (Theatre Royal Haymarket),  Women In White (Palace Theatre), The Kiss of the Spider Woman (Bush Theatre), Total Eclipse and Faust Parts 1and II (Lyric Hammersmith); Restoration (Royal Court Theatre); Titus Andronicus (Bristol Old Vic); and Amadeus, Sisterly Feelings, Galileo, Single Spies and Sir Peter Hall’s 80th birthday production of Twelfth Night (National Theatre).

He has also toured with the one-man shows The Mystery of Charles Dickens and Dr. Marigold and Mr. Chops.

As a director his work includes Shirley Valentine (West End and Broadway); Les Enfants du Paradis (Royal Shakespeare Company) and Carmen Jones (Old Vic).

And his numerous screen credits include Amadeus, A Room With a View, Maurice, Four Weddings and a Funeral, Shakespeare in Love, Postcards from the Edge and Chemical Wedding (film); Angels in America, Galileo’s Daughter, Hope Against Hope, Miss Marple, Lewis, Midsomer Murders, The Mystery of Charles Dickens and Dr Who (TV).

Book Being Shakespeare tickets online now.

[posted by Louise, 27/04/2011]