Monday, 23 April 2012

Shakespeare sells

A marathon of Shakespeare's plays
 to be performed in 37 languages

Today the Blog is dedicated to England’s greatest playwright. April 23rd is William Shakespeare’s birthday. I am running a marketing course back at Radcliffe House, Warwick Conferences, Coventry.

So I am celebrating Shakespeare’s Birthday in the county of Shakespeare’s birth, Warwickshire.

Yesterday Sunday 22nd April London witnessed two marathons. One was the more conventional running variety namely The London Marathon.

London Marathon 2012 - photo taken
 from Blackfriars Bridge, North bank side

Shakespeare's Globe , on London''s South Bank,
 open to the Public for free for Sonnet Sunday

The other marathon in  London has weeks to go. It is has been started at the Globe Theatre with ‘Sonnet Sunday’ . Shakespeare’s Globe on the south bank was open free to the public for the day include the museum.

Model of  the Globe Theatre in the museum of Shakespeare's Globe

An Australian Actress
 performs a sonnet in English

During the period I was there, I heard sonnets spoken in Japanese, Romanian, Flemish, Welsh Hungarian and English ( well beautiful Aussie ‘strein’ to be more accurate by a beautiful Australian).

She performed the Sonnet using the full area of the stage engaging
 the audience in the 'groundlings and
 the seated areas of the tiers, the master of ceremonies looks on

Even though I did not understand the non-English versions I was taken away by the passionate performance of the young actors delivering the Sonnets. The music and rhythm of Shakespeare crosses languages. The translations still seemed to have the music and rhythm of Shakespearean English. The actors and actresses love of the words transmitted to all in the open air theatre space by actors through body language, eye contact.
bathed in Spring sunshine visitors to the Shakespeare's Globe listen to a sonnet

It was fun to be amongst the ‘groundlings’ standing , looking up at the actors and watching their performance.
The event was also the launch day of Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre putting on all 37 plays in 37 languages a veritable marathon of drama.

A Shakespeare sonnet in Hungarian on the stage of Shakespeare's Globe, London
part of Sonnet Sunday at the Globe

What has this to do with Selling?

Well it’s to do with WORDS. As professional salespeople we not only have to be first class listeners and questioners but also we need to know about words and how they are expressed.

Although there were not salespeople in our postindustrial revolutionary sense in Shakespeare’s time, there were folk who sold things as part of the job.

There were:

 Factor Persons who made business transactions for another person (sort of agent) , Haberdashers who sold men's clothing. Salters who sold salt or salts meat, fish, and other food. Silversmith  who made, repairs, and sold items of silver. Vintners who made and sold wine. Other sales types included the Tranter Peddler who sold their wares from a horse-drawn cart .                                                                                                 
Maybe the closest to most playwright’s stereotype of a field sales person in Shakespearean England at the time the Peddler - an Itinerant  seller of merchandise. The Peddler stove no doubt  to try and be ‘well liked’ as  Arthur Miller’s Willie Lomax in  Miller’s twentieth Century play ‘Death of a salesman’ .

Yet of course we engage with Shakespeare not particularly because of the rank or status  of the characters, or the times they  are set  but what he reveals about human nature.

Human has not changed much over time. his observations are timeless.

Being both aware and knowledgeable  of human nature both our and our clients helps us enormously in our work. - Shakespeare sells.

In your are in London over the next few weeks why not go to a play  at Shakespeare's Globe and enjoy the universal appeal of Shakespeare in whatever language.

Globe to Globe at Shakespeare's Globe

 a  quote to finish in English
"And Since This Business So Fair is Done, Let Us Not Leave Till All Our Own Be Won."

Henry IV, Part I

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