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A Rose By Any Other Name - Rose Loughlin Interview

Irish actor Rosemary ‘Rose’ Loughlin debuts her new show at the Edinburgh Fringe. The show sees Rose chart the colourful journey of her real-life experiences to discover who is the real Shakespeare.

The show is playing at Paradise in The Vault running until August 28th 2022 (no show on August 21st. For the run, I spoke with Rose to explore the show further.

Our chat began with Rose explaining to me in further detail about the show, she said "The show is about my journey with Shakespeare, from childhood up to recent times. While it touches on my parents, my schooling and moves on to me taking acting classes as an adult and in particular classical acting classes,  the main body of the show deals with my coming across what is known as the Shakespeare Authorship Question. This is the scarcity of evidence that the man from Stratford upon Avon by the name of "William Shakspere" is the same person as the writer "William Shakespeare". My research into this issue, culminates in my acceptance that the main alternative candidate - Edward de Vere, 17th Earl of Oxford - used the penname William Shakespeare. "

How did Rose go about turning those life experiences into a show, she explained "Travelling to places associated with Edward de Vere turned into an exciting adventure - there were unexpected happenings along the way, so much so that I thought this would be ripe material for a one person show. With my background in acting I felt this was something I could both write about and perform."

With her own exciting adventure travelling to the places associated with Edward de Vere I posed to Rose what other research did she have to do when developing the show. "I have spent a number of years reading up on the Shakespeare Authorship Question and examining the evidence. Prior to each place I visited associated with de Vere (where he was born, spent his youth, lived and worked in, travelled to and died) I would research as much as I could about it. I also attended a lot of one person shows, looking at how other artists dealt with this genre of theatre"

For Rose did all of this change her perspective on Shakespeare's work? She told me "Well, becoming aware of the Shakespeare Authorship Question has completely changed my perspective on Shakespeare's work - I speak about this in the play. There are so many instances where what is happening in Shakespeare's plays can be traced back to Edward de Vere's life. For example in Shakespeare, a common theme in a number of plays is unmerited jealousy by a man with respect to his spouse - this same issue arose in Edward's life. Also, it is clear to me that the author was very well read - it just so happens that Edward de Vere is known to have had access to and studied subjects that are the key source material for the plays of Shakespeare. "

What does Rose want an audience member to take away from seeing the show? "Aside from curiosity about the issue of Shakespeare authorship and the life of Edward de Vere, I would absolutely love it if members of the audience felt inspired on their own respective personal journeys - one never knows where following one's nose will take one!"

Theatre is clearly a huge influence on Rose, she explained to me "Theatre to me is a sacred place where I have the potential to meet myself in a collective environment. It is a place where my deepest humanity - faults, failings and greatness can be accessed in a safe environment and potentially transform me. In fact in the show I speak about an instance where I was transformed by a production of Shakespeare's Julius Caesar. "

Our chat wrapped up with Rose simply explaining why an audience member should come and see the show, she said "To enjoy a passionate, insightful performance and leave curious and inspired!"

A Rose by Any Other Name plays at Edinburgh Fringe until August 28th (no show on August 21st). Tickets -  A Rose by Any Other Name | Theatre | Edinburgh Festival Fringe ( 

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