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Shakespearephilia

     I collect movies of “alternative” interpretations of Shakespeare’s tragedies. This clip is from my very favorite outre Lear, “My Kingdom,” Richard Harris’ last leading role.

     My new story idea (which has kept me awake tonight for the third night in a row) has as its pivotal character a recently deceased alien artist-anthropologist from the future, who was famous for being one of the first explorers of the now dead planet, Earth; and whose groundbreaking discovery was the work of the ancient human called “Shakespeare.”

     In this alien’s culture, babies’ brains are installed with wireless at birth; and a Person is not declared dead until his wireless fixtures stop functioning and all references to him on the “Web” (Yes, they really like the Earth term and adopted it; it made into the Aliens’ official book of words in less than a year) are archived by the Web as “no longer active.” So the alien and its ego, spouting bits of the Bard, haunt the institution he founded, as well his minions (probably a bookkeeper and a librarian), who are trying to dig the institution out of debt and keep it going.

     Story ideas usually pare down, improve and become more focused, given sufficient time. I’m sure this one will. I will just have to turn on the camera and start talking.

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Caden Manson is Editor In Chief and Curator of Contemporary Performance Network and co-founder and artistic director of Big Art Group, a New York City performance company founded in 1999.

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