Atwood's newest offering is a re-imagining of Shakespeare's The Tempest
Our first lady of letters, Margaret Atwood, has mined a love of Shakespeare for her fiction in the past (notably, her novel Cat's Eye, which features a character named Cordelia and a portrayal of the Earle Grey Players, a mid-century theatre company that often performed the bard for students). Her new project, Hag-seed, however, is a much more direct engagement. Part of the Hogarth Shakespeare project, which has recruited the most acclaimed English language writers in the world to adapt Shakespearean plays, Hag-seed is Atwood's take on The Tempest.
The novel, published just last week, has already been widely lauded; it was called "surpassingly brilliant... without question the cleverest ‘neo-Shakespearean novel’ I have read" by critic and Shakespeare scholar Jonathan Bate in The Times, and it has been praised as "funny and poignant," "inventive, heartfelt," and "a triumph" across multiple publications.
A still from Julie Taymor's film adaptation of The Tempest
So it's exciting to share that Atwood will be speaking and signing books tonight in Toronto at the Bell TIFF Lightbox. Presented by Penguin Random House Canada and TIFF, with support by the British Council, the event will feature a screening of auteur Julie Taymor's arresting film version of The Tempest. Following the film, Atwood will discuss the play, the film, and her new book, with award-winning stage director and actress Martha Henry.
Atwood fans won't want to miss this one. Details and tickets are available on the TIFF website. The event begins at 7:00pm tonight, Monday, October 17, at the Bell TIFF Lightbox (350 King Street West).