So this April it’s the 400th anniversary of the death of the bard. There are a bunch of festivities and events planned all over London. And don’t ask me why – probably for overall confusion, and I admit they even got me for a moment – the Barbican centre held the “Play On” Mini Shakespeare Festival this weekend.
I didn’t really know what to expect, when I went there this afternoon. At first it seemed that it was mostly activities for kids, but amongst all the hustle some very interesting events took place.
I listened to a podium discussion of English poets, talking about the influences of Shakespeare on modern-day work and I participated in a workshop held by the vocal coach of the actors of the Royal Shakespeare Company, where I learned to recite – and curse – like back in the day.
In the mezzanine, a little show called “Much Ado About Bingo” was going on, where a guy dressed as a 70s TV-host and a piano player sung well known songs with Shakespeares verses and the audience had to cross them off a bingo list. The prices, if you got a bingo, were random things like carrots and picture books. A bit odd, but funny.
I also saw the prototype of a projection mapping pop-up book staging Macbeth (stunning!), a demonstration of how stage fight gets brought to life (interesting!) and I got a temporary tattoo of Titania, drawn by illustration artist Orly Orbach (beautiful!).
And throughout all that, the pop-up performance “Kill Will” took place. It was basically two guys dresses as William Shakespeare running around the festival and arguing over who’s the real Shakespeare, half-quoting and half inventing his verses and disturbing other shows. It was quite funny actually.
Hach, what a very poetic afternoon!
And now I bid you all farewell and humbly hope we shall meet again!