Not-so incidental music


On opening night at the Stratford Shakespeare Festival, the festival stage was draped in Art Deco silks, and its horizon bedecked with wild touches of Magritte and Dali, to tell a magical story of court intrigue, banishment, love and redemption.

But this production of Shakespeare's "As You Like It" was also a feast of music. With screaming abandon, Justin Ellington turned the many songs in Shakespeare's play into a fullstage romp in the style of '20s and '30s jazz. And when the comic Touchstone grabbed a bass and thumped along, the crowd went crazy.  

Why is music so often slighted in Shakespeare? Clearly he placed tremendous importance on it. Justin talks about his project here:



(c) Stratford Shakespeare Festival, David Hou

Members of the Stratford Shakespeare Festival company