Tag Archives: World War 1

Shakespeare, theatre, and the Great War

Over the past few weeks we have been remembering the battle of the Somme that began on 1 July 1916 and continued for five long and bloody months. On the first day alone 19,240 men lost their lives. Even before … Continue reading

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Shakespeare, Rupert Brooke and World War 1

Exactly 100 years ago, on 23 April 1915, the poet Rupert Brooke died aged 27 in the Aegean en route to battle in Gallipoli.  He’s often described as a World War 1 poet, but he was already an established poet destined … Continue reading

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Marking the centenary of World War 1 with Shakespeare

This week the marking of the centenary of the outbreak of World War 1 has reached its climax with Remembrance Sunday and Armistice Day. The installation of the sea of ceramic poppies at the Tower of London has shown how … Continue reading

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Stratford, the Shakespeare Revival and World War 1

I have on my shelves a book entitled The Shakespeare Revival: the Stratford-upon-Avon Movement, probably acquired by my father in a second-hand shop years ago.  It’s always puzzled me. The book was published in 1911, and seems to expect the … Continue reading

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Children at war

Lyse Doucet’s recent BBC2 documentary, Children of Syria made gruelling viewing. She had spent six months following several displaced children in Syria. The children spoke with dignity and maturity beyond their years: all were aware that their childhoods have been … Continue reading

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From Warwick Pageant to theatre of war: the boy Shakespeare

In my post on 30 June I wrote about the Warwick Pageant, an extravaganza that took over the town of Warwick for a week in July 1906. It had taken months of planning, costume-making, and rehearsing, and around 1500 people … Continue reading

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Shakespeare and Stratford in World War 1

The outbreak of the First World War in late summer 1914 generated a huge recruiting campaign all round the country. In Stratford, where the summer Festival was taking place, a special performance of Henry V was mounted at the end … Continue reading

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Shakespeare in cartoons: the story of Bruce Bairnsfather

I’m always surprised to find how many links there are between Stratford, Shakespeare and other creative people. Recently I heard from Mark Warby who has provided me with the following information about one of these, the famous First World War … Continue reading

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Stratford’s Band of Brothers: the Bensonian Company

One of the most significant events in the early years of the theatre in Stratford was the appointment of Frank Benson to run the festivals. From 1879 to 1885 the Memorial Theatre had been a receiving house for companies bringing … Continue reading

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