Adam Long, Daniel Singer, Jess Borgeson, Jess Winfield
Applause Theater & Cinema Book Publishers, 2011
Source: A friend
Audience: Older Teens, Adults
To celebrate the 20th anniversary of the Reduced Shakespeare Company's classic farce, two of its original writer/performers (Daniel Singer and Jess Winfield) have thoroughly revised the show to bring it up to date for 21st-century audiences, incorporating some of the funniest material from the numerous amateur and professional productions that have been performed around the world. The cultural touchstone that is The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (abridged) was born when three inspired, charismatic comics, having honed their pass-the-hat act at Renaissance fairs, premiered their preposterous masterwork at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe in 1987. It quickly became a worldwide phenomenon, earning the title of London's second-longest-running comedy after a decade at the Criterion Theatre. The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (abridged) is one of the world's most frequently produced plays, and has been translated into several dozen languages. Featured are all 37 of Shakespeare's plays, meant to be performed in 97 minutes, by three actors. Fast paced, witty, and physical, it's full of laughter for Shakespeare lovers and haters alike.
I’m not a huge Shakespeare fan, but I knew enough about his work to appreciate The Complete Works of Shakespeare (Abridged) (Revised). Reading about all of the plays in such a short book was great fun, and I think my favorite part was when they compared the plays with kings and fighting to sports. (I also laughed out loud when one of the characters mistakenly called “Horatio” Fellatio. Oops.) Overall, I would like to see the play acted out and I would recommend this to people that appreciate both Shakespeare and pop culture humor.