Welcome to Episode #006 of That Shakespeare Life, the podcast that takes you behind the curtain and into the life of William Shakespeare.

I believe that if you want to understand Shakespeare’s plays, then understanding the life of William Shakespeare, the man, is essential. This podcast is designed to help you explore early modern England as Shakespeare would have lived it by interviewing the historians, performers, authors, and experts that know him best.

Pauline Montagna joins us today to unpack one of the lesser known contemporaries of Shakespeare, the life of Edward Alleyn who rivaled Richard Burbage for the title of most famous actor in England during the 17th century.

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Pauline Montagna is a successful writer, author, and historian. Her latest book is titled Not Wisely But Too Well which makes the claim that Edward Alleyn, and not Shakespeare, was the upstart crow insulted famously by Robert Greene. This latest book is a follow on step in her Shakespeare series, which started with the book Deconstructing Shakespeare, a detailed look at Shakespeare’s start as a playwright in London.  Based in Melbourne, Australia, and a self described “practical minded” writer, Pauline has self-published ten novels, the most recent of which have focused on the early life of William Shakespeare.

In this episode, I’ll be asking Pauline about :

  • What evidence really turned her towards thinking Edward Alleyn would have been the upstart crow?
  • Were Alleyn, Henslowe, and Marlowe rivals to Shakespeare? Didn’t they act together?
  • Which plays is Edward Alleyn most well known for?

Resources mentioned in today’s episode:

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(p.s. these are great gift ideas for that Shakespearean in your life)