Actor, Nicolas Cage, recently said that he was distrustful of Americans attempting Shakespeare because it doesn't sound right. He said:
I'm one of those people that feels Americans should not do Shakespeare. There is something about it. I feel the rhythm of the English language and manner of English speech seem to work effectively with William Shakespeare but when Americans do it, something seems stuck.
But hold on! In England, we don't go around spouting Shakespearean verse. It's a learned thing - something that requires training. Both modern English and American are equally as divorced from the rhythmic, verbal culture of Elizabethan England - and solid actor training is required to reconnect the performer with Shakespeare's language.
I recently interviewed the RSC's voice coach, Lyn Darnley, who noted that "we're much less engaged with language now. Speech is less engaged. We don't speak with the same muscularity, energy or dynamic like people did before there was a visual back up for communication."
What do you think? Do you agree with Cage? Should American's steer clear of Shakespeare?
Photo © Getty Images / Malcolm Taylor