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App of the Week: The Sonnet Project

I just watched one of Shakespeare's sonnets on my iPhone. Well, "watched" isn't quite right. I simmered in Shakespeare's warm embrace. I shuddered before his articulate majesty. I sat stunned, amazed at how moving the words of a writer who died four centuries ago sounded, coming out of a screen that fit in the palm of my hand. A man for all media, indeed.

And then I said, please, can I have another?

"The Sonnet Project" is an app released in May by the Shakespeare Exchange. It is simple in concept, but absolutely exquisite in execution. Actors in various urban New York settings recite one of Shakespeare's 154 sonnets. Ten are already accessible via the app, about 70 are supposed to be in the can, and the plan is to release every single sonnet as an Internet video over the year leading up to Shakespeare's 450th birthday.

The cinematography is creative, the musical accompaniment is sublime and the readings scratch handfuls of pain and beauty out of your very soul. Love, lust, betrayal -- that guy Will Shakespeare, he was the real deal.

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