Living Paintings

Shakespeare’s Kings and Heroines

Suitable for: Book Clubs

First enjoy finding out about the bard himself – we all know his name but what do we really know about the man? Then enjoy dipping into two of his plays. Join Derek Jacobi as he talks about Richard II. Then linger by the water’s edge to study Ophelia, a beautiful Pre-Raphaelite painting depicting the sad heroine in Hamlet.

Listen to an audio clip

Who was this man, William Shakespeare, who died nearly five hundred years ago and is known in all the corners of the world? He was a man of mystery and there has been endless speculation about his life, the certainties of one age being overturned by the findings of the next. There is not a single undisputed line of his own writing remaining, although he left behind him 36 plays, 154 Sonnets and poems as well as other works. All we have in Shakespeare's own hand are six signatures. A score or more of his works will be being performed around the world at any one time and much is known about him, factually at any rate. He was born in Stratford-upon "Avon, on 23 April 1564, and was baptised in the parish church of Holy Trinity three days later. He was the third of eight children born to John Shakespeare and his wife Mary Arden. His father was a successful glove maker and wool dealer in the prosperous market town of Stratford and became mayor and a justice of the peace. His fortunes, however, declined and by the time of William's marriage the family was hard up.

What's inside

  • 10 copies of two or three raised tactile images.
  • Audio descriptions with music and sound effects in your chosen format of either CD or USB.
  • An A4 large print colour image pack, containing 10 copies of each topic.
  • Guidance Notes, for Book Club leaders, to help you make the most of using this book.
  • An ‘Articles for the Blind’ returns label for the free and convenient return of the box.

Touch to see image list

The Flower Portrait by an Unknown Artist
Costume for Richard II
Ophelia by Sir John Everett Millais

What our members say

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Excellent story of Shakespeare's Life The story of Shakespeare's life history was excellent. We enjoyed some sensory activities including smells, herbs and sugar. We enjoyed a Shakespeare quiz and watched the film Richard III Library Member
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