Talk: Shakespeak with David Crystal
- Wed 08 Nov 2017
- 6:30 pm
Join linguist David Crystal at the International Anthony Burgess Foundation as he explores Anthony Burgess’s obsession with William Shakespeare, and the growing movement to rediscover the original pronunciation of the playwright’s work.
This talk and Q&A by David Crystal is part of the #Burgess100 celebrations marking a century since the birth of Anthony Burgess, and includes exclusive unheard archive recordings of Anthony Burgess talking in Shakespeare’s original pronunciation.
Anthony Burgess was fascinated by the writing and life of William Shakespeare, producing a novel, a speculative biography, a ballet suite, a TV series and a Hollywood musical on the subject of Shakespeare’s life. David Crystal, Honorary Professor of Linguistics at the University of Bangor, has compiled The Oxford Dictionary of Original Shakespearean Pronunciation, and helped bring an original-pronunciation version of Romeo and Juliet to Shakespeare’s Globe.
Alongside an exploration of Burgess, find out more about the original early modern English interpretation of Shakespeare’s text. It’s rarely used in stage performance, yet quirks such as “loins” and “lines” being pronounced the same way open up rhythms and rhymes often missed in productions of Shakespeare’s work.
Whether you’re a devotee of Burgess or Shakespeare, this talk is a must for everyone interested in language and its use. Burgess wrote two non-fiction books about the study of language – Language Made Plain and A Mouthful of Air – translated French novels and Russian plays into English, and famously invented new languages for Quest for Fire and A Clockwork Orange. David Crystal’s most recent books are ‘A Life Made of Words: the poetry and thought of John Bradburne’ and ‘We are Not Amused: Victorian views on pronunciation as told in the pages of Punch’.