Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Madeline Reads The Sonnets

http://www.youtube.com/profile_videos?user=msbunburyist&p=r

I've seen many projects where someone says "I'm going to read/perform all of the Sonnets!"  I link specifically to this one because a) she's doing it in video, which is certainly harder but also offers more expressive opportunities, b) she's not padding it down with any sort of "Hi everybody here we go" talk, it's just sonnets, and c) she actually appears to be doing it - she's through the first 40.  Most of the time someone attempts this they give up long before that.

Update:  I wrote to Madeline asking why she'd stopped at 40, and she said that her computer broke but she was back in business and posting more.

5 comments:

catkins said...

And an amazingly good job she does, too. She is pretty good with the meter and only missed one accented past participle in the first 15 sonnets I listened to. I only disagreed with a few points on the scansion, but all in all it's the best sonnet reading I have heard (far better than Vendler's).

Craig said...

And talk about a "fair youth..." That never hurts a poetry reading, either.

Madeline said...

I'm incredibly flattered, and I hope that if you have quibbles or ideas about my pronunciation or scansion, you'll let me know. I can't guarantee I'll change anything, but I am really interested in hearing other people's ideas about it - especially if it results in other people putting their own interpretations up on YouTube.

catkins said...

Here's a link to my emended version of the original 1609 text:
http://www.fdu.edu/newspubs/fdupress/sonnets1609.pdf
This is what I think is as close as you can get to the original punctuation, which should help with the scansion. Just read the comma as a slight pause, semicolon as a longer pause and period as the longest pause. The punctuation did not indicate sentence structure.

Madeline said...

I'll switch over to your emended version, then - that is incredibly useful. From the cruddy, punctuation-added version, I moved to a facsimile of the 1609 quarto, which has the benefit of being 100% Shakespeare but the drawback of causing the unpleasant squinty-eyed staring face that you see in the videos I made this afternoon. Your version should solve that problem. Thank you so much!