Saturday, 23 April 2016

You have dancing shoes with nimble soles

"Nay, gentle Romeo, we must have you dance."

"Not I, believe me. You have dancing shoes
With nimble soles. I have a soul of lead
So stakes me to the ground I cannot move."

"You are a lover. Borrow Cupid’s wings
And soar with them above a common bound."
On this day of all things Shakespearean*, it is a felicitous coincidence indeed that also born on this day was the composer Sergei Prokofiev.

For it was Prokofiev who took inspiration from Will's greatest romantic play Romeo and Juliet to create one of the best ballet scores of the 20th century.

From it comes one of my favourite pieces of classical music, the dramatic and triumphal Dance of the Knights - also known as Montagues and Capulets - here played in its entirety by the London Symphony Orchestra conducted by Valery Gergiev:

And if that didn't wake you up, nothing will!

Sergei Prokofiev (23rd April 1891 - 5th March 1953)

[*'tis 400 years since the Bard's death, and traditionally also the date usually marked as his birthday.]

Shakespeare and his boys are the latest "exhibit" in the Dolores Delargo Towers Museum of Camp.


  1. All the world's a stage,
    and all the men and women merely players:
    they have their exits and their entrances;
    and one man in his time plays many parts,
    his acts being seven ages.

    1. At first, the infant,
      Mewling and puking in the nurse's arms.

      Then the whining schoolboy, with his satchel
      And shining morning face, creeping like snail
      Unwillingly to school.

      And then the lover,
      Sighing like furnace, with a woeful ballad
      Made to his mistress' eyebrow.

      Then a soldier,
      Full of strange oaths and bearded like the pard,
      Jealous in honour, sudden and quick in quarrel,
      Seeking the bubble reputation
      Even in the cannon's mouth.

      And then the justice,
      In fair round belly with good capon lined,
      With eyes severe and beard of formal cut,
      Full of wise saws and modern instances;
      And so he plays his part.

      The sixth age shifts
      Into the lean and slippered pantaloon,
      With spectacles on nose and pouch on side;
      His youthful hose, well saved, a world too wide
      For his shrunk shank, and his big manly voice,
      Turning again toward childish treble, pipes
      And whistles in his sound.

      Last scene of all,
      That ends this strange eventful history,
      Is second childishness and mere oblivion,
      Sans teeth, sans eyes, sans taste, sans everything.

      I rather hope I am at the "wise saws and modern instances" stage... Jx


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