Monday, April 25, 2016

Jacobi and Rylance appear on NPR's Morning Edition and YouTube

Shakespeare Authorship Coalition Chairman John Shahan, shared this news with Oberon readers:


Jacoby and Rylance discuss the Declaration of Reasonable Doubt on SAC YouTube channel.

by John Shahan

Claremont, California -- In an interview with Renee Montagne, host of NPR's Morning Edition, on the occasion of the 400th anniversary of Shakespeare's death, Shakespearean actors Derek Jacobi and Mark Rylance reaffirmed support for theDeclaration of Reasonable Doubt About the Identity of William Shakespeare, which they launched in the U.K. in 2007. The Declaration has been signed by "over 3,000 actors, academics, lawyers and others," Montagne said, later adding that several U.S. Supreme Court Justices have been doubters, and Justices Sandra Day O'Connor and John Paul Stevens have actually signed the Declaration.

In the interview, titled "Shakespearean Actors Revive Debate Over The Bard's Identity," Jacobi and Rylance say that Shakespeare, uniquely among Elizabethan writers, left no contemporary evidence of a writing career, that the life he lived seems unrelated to the plays, and when he died in 1616 nobody seemed to notice. In contrast, "When Frances Beaumont, a lesser-known writer, died a month before Shakespeare..., he immediately goes to Westminster Abbey," Rylance said.

Jacobi and Rylance give a "portrait" of the sort of person the real author must have been, based on their understanding from reading and performing the plays -- someone with a documented literary career; extensive education in "a huge range of subjects;" fluent in multiple foreign languages, including French, Italian, Spanish and Greek; easy familiarity with the ways of the nobility and with aristocratic pastimes such as falconry and equestrian sports. He would also have traveled widely in Italy. "So anyone to be a candidate to be the author would have to meet these basic characteristics of the works we have," Rylance said.

"Writers write from their own point of view, and the point of view ... in the works just isn't that of Mr. Shakspere, based on what we know of his life." Jacobi said.

"We are not questioning out of any animosity to the author," Rylance said, "we are questioning because we love the author and think there's ... a mystery here."

In addition to the interview, Jacobi and Rylance produced a 30-minute video for theShakespeare Authorship Coalition, the host organization for the Declaration. The video, titled "Sir Derek Jacobi and Mark Rylance Discuss the Declaration of Reasonable Doubt," can be viewed at the SAC website at: DoubtAboutWill.org.