Tuesday, January 18, 2011

My Work on Librivox.org

A few months ago I lent my voice to a Librivox.org recording of Shakespeare's Henry V. The completed product is here. It has been up for a few weeks, but being the holidays those were a busy few weeks, and I am only just now getting around to posting about it.

I mention it here because it was voluntary, and most of the people involved with Librivox projects are amateurs, though not all are actors. I of course am, and I thought my loyal blog readers would enjoy hearing me perform as Michael Williams. You can find me in Act 4 starting at about the 7:30 mark. It's actually an interesting though short scene. A very key moment that I think often gets overlooked in productions of the play. But in it Henry is, in a sense, laying by his royalty, (the "idle ceremony" as he cause it in a subsequent scene) in order to get a sense of how the common man feels not only about him, but about his actions, and the current campaign in France.

Michael Williams is one such common solider, and he has an interesting speech about the men who do not "die well" in a battle, and the consequences of same. I actually think I'd find this to be an interesting smaller role to play on stage as well.

I do make a reappearance as the character late in Act IV, when the king reveals the joke he has played on Williams, by setting him, falsely against another man, whom Williams mistakes to be the hooded figured with whom he fault earlier. I am less fond of that scene, but the Bard wrote it nonetheless, so it is in the recording.

As for technical aspects, in some cases those who read for the recording had access to the lines of the others, but generally we recorded out own lines on our own computers, without anyone else to feed us cues. Later someone else edited everything together. At time you can tell that this is the case if you listen to an entire scene. But LibroVox doesn't claim to be a theatrical production. Just an archive of many public domain works.

I also appeared in King Henry VI Part 2, but those parts were all so minor I didn't bother digging up the links for them. A handful of servants and nameless captains with a few lines here and there. Nothing to write home about, though fun to do.

My plan is to do more for LibriVox in the future. I have done a few poems for them. I hope to do longer things in the future, along with more poems and hopefully more Shakespeare.

Check them out, and not just because I am on there. Maybe you can be a volunteer reader as well!

1 comment:

Elizabeth said...

good for you for recording for Librivox. We just created an iPhone app that pulls those titles: Audiobooks For Your Kids. If you have a favorite title, let us know and we'll pull it for future versions.