As You Like It



Thomas Morley (c. 1557–1602) composed music for "It Was a Lover and His Lass"; he lived in the same parish as Shakespeare, and at times composed music for Shakespeare's plays.

In 1942, Gerald Finzi included a setting of "It Was a Lover and His Lass" (V, iii) in his song cycle on Shakespearean texts Let Us Garlands Bring.

Donovan set "Under the Greenwood Tree" to music and recorded it for A Gift from a Flower to a Garden in 1968.

Mark Nichols wrote a musical version of the play in 2007.

In 2008, to celebrate the 450th anniversary of the ascension of Elizabeth I, Lady and Lord Salisbury, descendant of Robert Cecil, commissioned composer Scott Stroman to create a new set of Shakespeare Songs, most which were drawn from As You Like It. They were premiered in the Great Hall in which Elizabeth had held her first council of state in 1558.

Michael John Trotta composed a setting of "Blow, Blow, Thou Winter Wind" for choir in 2013.[21]


According to the history of radio station WCAL in the US state of Minnesota, As You Like It may have been the first play ever broadcast. It went over the air in 1922.

On 1 March 2015, BBC Radio 3 broadcast a new production directed by Sally Avens with music composed by actor and singer Johnny Flynn of acclaimed folk rock band Johnny Flynn and The Sussex Wit.[22] The production included Pippa Nixon as Rosalind, Luke Norris as Orlando, Adrian Scarborough as Touchstone, William Houston as Jaques, Ellie Kendrick as Celia and Jude Akuwudike as Corin.


As You Like It was Laurence Olivier's first Shakespeare film. Olivier, however, served only in an acting capacity (performing the role of Orlando), rather than producing or directing the film. Made in England and released in 1936, As You Like It also starred director Paul Czinner's wife Elizabeth Bergner, who played Rosalind with a thick German accent. Although it is much less "Hollywoody" than the versions of A Midsummer Night's Dream and Romeo and Juliet made at about the same time, and although its cast was made up entirely of Shakespearean actors, it was not considered a success by either Olivier or the critics.

Helen Mirren starred as Rosalind in the 1978 BBC videotaped version of As You Like It, directed by Basil Coleman.[23]

In 1992, Christine Edzard made another film adaptation of the play. It features James Fox, Cyril Cusack, Andrew Tiernan, Griff Rhys Jones, and Ewen Bremner. The action is transposed to a modern and bleak urban world.

A film version of As You Like It, set in 19th-century Japan, was released in 2006, directed by Kenneth Branagh. It stars Bryce Dallas Howard, David Oyelowo, Romola Garai, Alfred Molina, Kevin Kline, and Brian Blessed. Although it was actually made for cinemas, it was released to theatres only in Europe, and had its U.S. premiere on HBO in 2007. And although it was not a made-for-television film, Kevin Kline won a Screen Actors Guild award for Best Performance by a Male Actor in a Television Movie or Miniseries for his performance as Jaques.[24]

In 2012, Distant Thunder Films [25] produced an award-winning [26] film adaptation of the play set in modern-day San Francisco's Mission District. Directed by Marika Sonja Cotter, a graduate of the USC School of Cinematic Arts, LOVE: As You Like It was produced with a crowd-sourced budget of roughly $16,000.[27] Though deeply abridged, this feature-length adaptation features the original language of the play and offers an interpretation of the play through the use of performance, color, camera movement, space and medium [28] (both Super 8mm film and digital video were used [27]).

Musical theatre

Daniel Aquisito and Sammy Buck adapted this play into an 1980s themed musical entitled Like You Like It.[29]

For Shakespeare's 450th birthday Scott Stroman adapted the play into a stage musical of the same name, premiered in London, England by Highbury Opera Theatre in June 2014. Stroman's version edits Shakespeare's original text, removing subplots and combining characters to make room for the jazz-influenced music, which also alludes to the music of William Byrd. In addition to the songs existing in the play he sets some sections of dialogue as songs (All the World's a Stage, What 'Tis to Love, Married Tomorrow), borrows songs from other plays (O Mistress Mine, Sigh No More, Fear No More) and creates a musical prologue (Crabbed Age and Youth, from The Passionate Pilgrim).

Graphic novel

A manga-style graphic novel was released in January 2009 by Self-Made Hero publishers, where the setting of the Forest of Arden has been transposed to modern-day China. The story has been adapted by Richard Appignanesi and features the illustrations of Chie Kutsuwada.

Other musical work

The Seven Doors of Danny, by Ricky Horscraft and John McCullough is based on the "Seven Ages of Man" element of the "All the World's a Stage" speech and was premiered in April 2016.

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