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New Exhibit Remembers Shakespeare's Silent Soirée

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New Exhibit Remembers Shakespeare's Silent Soirée

Performing Arts

New Exhibit Remembers Shakespeare's Silent Soirée

New Exhibit Remembers Shakespeare's Silent Soirée

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Forget the Merry Wives of Windsor, NPR's Scott Simon recalls a time when Shakespeare spent the night with a groupie.

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

A new Shakespeare sonnet, sort of, has come to light. An exhibit will open next year at the British Library to mark the 400 years since Shakespeare's death. It will feature a 1602 diary entry in which Richard Burbage, the famous actor who was playing Richard III at the Globe Theater, received an invitation from a female admirer backstage.

Shakespeare overheard the invitation. When the actor came to knock on her door later that night, he found that the playwright was already in residence. Shakespeare sent his friend the actor the next day saying William the Conqueror was before Richard III. It must have been hard, in any case, to compete with the man who wrote - here my soul speak. Of the very instant that I saw you, did my heart fly to your service.

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