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Comparing Shakespeare and Marlowe

With Antony Sher

Does Shakespeare's dramatic verse seem to be different to Marlowe's?


Sher: As an actor, you get to taste the language of different playwrights—taste it, literally, in the mouth. Shakespeare is full of subtle, complex, delicate flavours; Marlowe is rougher, more raw. And then there’s their use of the iambic pentameter. Marlowe’s mighty lines have a thumping regularity to them. Shakespeare is like a master jazz musician, both keeping to the beat and jamming round it. 

So to those people who suggest that Marlowe wasn’t killed, but went on to write all of Shakespeare, I believe it’s simply impossible. Shakespeare couldn’t be Marlowe—or anyone else.

Antony Sher

Antony Sher

Antony Sher is a South African-born British actor, writer, theatre director and painter, who has played many roles by Shakespeare and his contemporaries.

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