Today is William Shakespeare's Birthday. As someone who grew up doing plays and working behind the curtain of the theater I've always been a fan of The Bard and was psyched when asked to take part in his birthday celebration this year.
I make part of my living speaking and more than once someone has asked how I can be so comfortable in front of an audience. I always grin a bit and reply, "After you've been on stage with a donkey head on and reciting Shakespeare this is easy." The comment is a reference to me performing as the character of Bottom in A Midsummer Night's Dream while in college.
Shakespeare wrote some amazing plays, poems and sonnets and he has always been an inspiration to me. I've read most of his work and a copy of his complete works is never far from me.
His writing is filled with political commentary, love notes to people he couldn't actually touch and more then one drop of snark. I love everything about his writing.
If you've never had the chance to see some of his classics such as Othello, Macbeth or Hamlet performed you really need to. Not much of a theater person? Then run out and rent Henry V or Romeo & Juliet. Both are unique tellings that are sure to entertain and inspire. If you've never read any of this poetry, do yourself a favor and take a few minutes to do so.
The photo shown here is from the Globe Theater in England. A few years back when I had the chance to visit London, this was the only MUST see location while I was there. It was the off season so there were no performances, but we happened to catch a school field trip acting out a famous fight scene on stage while we were there and I couldn't stop smiling from this moment of magic.
Because of what Shakespeare wrote I fell in love with theater. I haven't done a play in years, but those who know me are aware of how much I crave to be on one. During my days as an active member of Alpha Psi Omega my days (and many late nights) were spent working on plays and they are some of my happiest memories.
Take a moment and watch this video put together to celebrate his birthday. It features a variety of bloggers (including myself and my daughter Emily) reciting lines from the famous St. Crispin's Day speech.
People in today's world need to realize that we live in an always on society. Social media and the tools we carry in our pockets make this more true than ever.
You may not ever step upon a stage, but the truth is that all the world's a stage and we are merely players.