REVIEW: Shakespeare’s Will at Quantum Theatre

By November 14, 2019 Uncategorized

When William Shakespeare died in 1616, he left behind dozens of plays and hundreds of poems, but little other than a last will and testament to shed light on his personal life. That document contains a much-debated line that has been inserted, almost as an afterthought, into a paragraph detailing his fairly generous bequest to his younger daughter Judith: “I give unto my wife my second best bed with the furniture.”

The oddness of this posthumous treatment of Shakespeare’s wife, Anne Hathaway, has prompted Canadian playwright Vern Thiessen to ponder what her life, and their relationship, might have been like. Taking some of the few facts that historians can agree upon as a springboard for his own invention, Thiessen conjures into existence a woman who may or may not have existed, but one whose story is not only compelling but also serves to plausibly explain the mystery of Shakespeare’s bequest. -Wendy Arons, Pittsburgh Tatler

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