Spinning Shakespeare into modern prose: Will it work?(Read article summary)
Hogarth Press launches the Hogarth Shakespeare, which publish 'prose retellings' of Shakespeare's works to mark the Bard's 400th birthday.
Shakespeare‚Äôs getting a makeover ‚Äď again.
Random House publishing imprint Hogarth has started the Hogarth Shakespeare, which will bring in current authors to adapt the Bard‚Äôs plays for a current audience. So far, ‚ÄúBreathing Lessons‚ÄĚ writer Anne Tyler and ‚ÄúWhy Be Happy When You Could Be Normal?‚ÄĚ author Jeanette Winterson have signed on, Tyler to adapt ‚ÄúThe Taming of the Shrew‚ÄĚ and Winterson to restyle ‚ÄúThe Winter‚Äôs Tale.‚ÄĚ Writers from all over the world will be brought in to adapt the stories, and the fruits of their labor are planned for a 2016 release date to go with the 400th anniversary of Shakespeare‚Äôs death. The stories will be released in print, e-book, and audio form.
The new versions will be ‚Äúprose retellings,‚ÄĚ according to Publishers Weekly. It has not been mentioned whether all of Shakespeare‚Äôs works will be adapted.
The new versions will ‚Äúbe true to the spirit of the original dramas and their popular appeal, while giving authors an exciting opportunity to reinvent these seminal works of English literature,‚ÄĚ according to a statement from Hogarth.
‚ÄúI don't know which I'm looking forward to more,‚ÄĚ Tyler told the BBC. ‚ÄúDelving into the mysteries of shrewish Kate or finding out what all the other writers do with their Shakespeare characters.‚ÄĚ
How will the public receive rewritten Shakespeare? Some have their doubts ‚Äď the Los Angeles Times article on the project carried the headline ‚ÄúEnlisting novelists to rewrite Shakespeare: A losing proposition?‚ÄĚ
‚ÄúIt asks famous writers to essentially best the greatest of their forefathers ‚Äď by grappling with his own oeuvre,‚ÄĚ LA Times writer Alexander Nazaryan wrote.
But Guardian writer Bidisha is looking forward to the reimaginings.¬†
‚ÄúI'm intrigued,‚ÄĚ she wrote. ‚ÄúTo appoint acclaimed, fully established writers like Winterson and Tyler is hardly some facetious gimmick. It's an opportunity to discover what the timeless geniuses of now make of a timeless genius of then.‚ÄĚ