What if Shakespeare… won an Oscar?

What if Shakespeare won an Academy Award for Best Actor and gave an acceptance speech…

81st Academy Awards¨ Press Kit Images

Ay me! [1] every part about me quivers [2]. This poor heart of mine [3] trembling even at [4] the sound of [5] mine own name [6]. I have heard, but not believed [7], my thoughts are humbled all [8] as thou dost [9] surprise me to the brink of tears [10]. I humbly thank you [11]. Thanks my countrymen, my loving friends [12]. I thank my stars I am happy [13]. A proclaim’d prize [14] it is an honour that I have dreamed [15] of these many years [16].  For the nomination [17] hath so humbled me [18] and being a winner [19] by how much unexpected [20] carries beyond belief [21].

My son, quoth he [22], “if you have victory [23] speak the speech, I pray you, trippingly on the tongue” [24]. Methinks that [25] I am not able to [26]. I hath often dreamed of [27] certain speeches utter’d [28] in the looking-glass [29], but now I think [30] that strength of speech is utterly denied me [31] O, pardon me, my liege! But for my tears, / the moist impediments unto my speech [32].

But I prattle / something too wildly [33]. I will be brief [34].  To these great fellows [35] these competitors [36], let me commend thee first [37], the harder match’d, the greater victory [38]. The learned writer [39] not I, is the doer of this, and he is to be thanked [40] He hath made his masterpiece [41].

The sounds of music / creep in our ears [42]. Where should this music be? [43]. They desire to [44] cut me off [45]. They shouted thrice [46] “bid him make haste” [47]. Tarry a little, there is something else [48]. This player here [49] is truly honoured [50]. A thousand thanks [51] for mine [52] statue in pure gold [53].

Words by Shakespeare – rearranged by Linda Nicoll

References:

1              Romeo & Juliet: I. i. 185

2              Romeo & Juliet: II. iv. 1316-17

3              Venus and Adonis: 523

4              Henry IV P I: I. iii. 473

5              Coriolanus: I. vi. 643

6              Two Gentlemen of Verona: I. ii. 279

7              The Winter’s Tale: III. iii. 1507

8              Titus Andronicus: I. i. 56

9              Julius Caesar: I. ii. 296

10           Timon of Athens: V. i. 2438

11           All’s Well That Ends Well: III. V. 1720

12           Richard II: I. iv. 647

13           Twelfth Night: II. V. 1192

14           King Lear: IV. Vi. 2844]

15           Romeo and Juliet: I. iii. 451

16           Henry VI P I: II. iii. 870

17           Love’s Labour’s Lost: IV. ii. 1283

18           Two Gentlemen of Verona: II. iv. 794

19           The Taming of the Shrew: V. ii. 2695

20           King John: II. i. 372

21           Anthony and Cleopatra: III. vii. 2031

22           The Taming of the Shrew: I. i. 508

23           King Lear: V. i. 3073

24           Hamlet: III. ii. 18

25           Two Gentlemen of Verona: IV. Iv. 1917

26           Timon of Athens: III. ii. 1060

27           Much Ado About Nothing: II. i. 720

28           Henry VIII: II. iv. 1542

29           The Winter’s Tale: I. ii. 192

30           Cymbeline: III. Vi. 2158

31           Henry IV P II: IV. v 3113

32           Henry V: IV. v. 3034-35

33           The Tempest: III. i. 1345-46

34           Hamlet: II. ii. 1186

35           Anthony and Cleopatra: II. vii. 1540

36           Anthony and Cleopatra: II. vii. 1459

37           Coriolanus: IV. v. 2912

38           Henry VI P III: V. i. 2670

39           Much Ado About Nothing: III. v. 1639

40           Twelfth Night: III. iv. 1627-28

41           Macbeth: II. iii. 838

42           The Merchant of Venice: V. i. 2509-10

43           The Tempest: I. ii 550

44           Love’s Labour’s Lost: V. ii. 2029

45           Henry IV P I: IV. iii. 2544

46           Julius Caesar: I. ii. 318

47           Two Gentlemen of Verona: III. i. 1332

48           The Merchant of Venice: IV. i. 2251-52

49           Hamlet: III. ii. 1624

50           Rape of Lucrece: 461

51           Henry V: IV. iv. 2429

52           All’s Well That Ends Well: V. iii. 2766

53           Romeo and Juliet: V. iii. 3275

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