Two families in Renaissance Verona, Italy lie at the center of "Romeo and Juliet," Shakespeare's timeless tragedy about two young teens caught up in the whirlwind of emotions and decisions typical of so many young people, past and present.
Both families are Italian. Both families are wealthy and influential. Both families are stubborn. Family members have been caught up in a quarrel that has led to past feuds and present enmity, so much that when the young Romeo Montague and Juliet Capulet perceive that they have fallen in love, they marry in secret because they know their families will never allow them to be together.
Trouble is bound to happen.
Romeo, through no fault of his own, is caught up in a type of gang fight and "accidentally" kills a Capulet. Distraught, he is banished, but seeks a way to take his beloved Juliet with him.
Through the intermediary who married them, Friar Laurence, Romeo arranges to meet Juliet and devises a plan where they can escape and live happily ever after.
Such is the stuff of fairy tales, but this is a Shakespearean tragedy, so "happily ever after" can never be.
Rather, the twists and turns in this Shakespearean drama, although difficult to believe, have tugged at millions of heartstrings from the time the play was first performed until contemporary times.
Most high school students study this play in class as their first or second foray into the works of William Shakespeare. Teachers and parents continue to realize its value, and that having a background in Shakespeare leads to improved understanding of later works they will encounter.
Besides, this play is a masterpiece of the conventions of lyric poetry, with all the embedded sonnets, lines and conventions it includes.
Being able to listen to the "Romeo and Juliet" audiobook enables parents, teachers and students alike to enter a dialogue as they share in the study of the play, thus adding to the enjoyment of the work.
William Shakespeare was christened in Holy Trinity Church, Stratford on Avon, England, April 26 1564. He was the child of John Shakespeare and Mary Arden. Shakespeare did attend a type of boarding school, but it is unclear as to how much schooling he actually received.
He married Anne Hathaway in 1583 when he was 18 years old and she was 26. Their child, Susanna, was christened in Holy Trinity Church much earlier than nine months after their marriage, leading to the assumption that Anne was pregnant at the time they were married. Shakespeare knew something about teenage angst.
"Romeo and Juliet" is one of Shakespeare's early tragedies. Other Shakespearean tragedies include "Hamlet," "Julius Caesar," "Macbeth," "King Lear" and a number of lesser known plays.
is proud to present the Oregon Shakespeare Festival’s 2012 production of Romeo
and Juliet, one of Shakespeare’s most beloved tragedies. This stunning
work of audio theater, fully dramatized with performances by the OSF cast, is a
A love to die for…
When you are passionately, purely in love,
nothing else matters—not even life itself. Shakespeare’s consummate tragedy of
young lovers swept into a catastrophic vortex of misunderstandings, secrets,
and fate is set in 1840s Alta California, a vibrant and conflicted time in our
history. Romeo and Juliet, the son and daughter of two landed families locked
in an old feud, are irresistibly drawn to each other. Defying the hatred and
distrust surrounding them, they dare to believe they can—and must—be together.
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