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Sharing Shakespeare's Story

Young Shakespeare Contemplating

This comtemporary portrait of Shakespeare is a contrast to some of the more traditional portraits of the Bard. Young Shakespeare Contemplating is a portrait by Australian artist Ted May. This portrait was part of the exhibition ‘The Face of Shakespeare’ at the eighth World Shakespeare Congress, Brisbane City Hall, 16th-21st July 2006, and was purchased by the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust following this. 

When producing the images of the dramatist for this exhibition Ted May not only took a humorous way in imagining what Shakespeare may have been/looked like, but he also started to write flippant rhymes and lines of poetry to accompany the pieces. The lines that accompanied this piece are as follows:

Young Shakespeare Contemplating

O Lord cast down thy thunderalls
Upon thy servant before ye, yo humble all
Oh Job, oh glob, o glory be
Strike before dawn with thousand thoughts
Send magic scrolls on sails of cloud
For yonder can’st I hear them cry
Shakespeare, Shakespeare you do’eth now,
“or die”.

Woe! Me hears the call so far and wide
What do I do now, shall I run and hide
But then surprise to he comes a call
To play men in tights, balls n all.

So he gathers around his merry men
And says to them, jus hang it loose
We need a good ruse to serve a hot pie
And a streaming stew for a cunning crew
Then cries aloud a full throttle call,
I’s got the plot
So die?
“Not I”.

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