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THE DIVINE COMEDY

by | Read by Heathcote Williams, John Shrapnel

Classics • 14 hrs. • Unabridged • © 2004

Heathcote Williams enters into this new translation of Dante’s masterpiece with almost as much enthusiasm as did Dante himself. Whether the souls Dante meets in the Inferno are tortured by cold, fire, their own fingernails, or just longing, Williams manages to make their pain come to life. His reading is so dramatic and so individualized that it feels more like a full-cast production than a solo reading, especially with the accompanying music, which both sets the mood and provides transitions. Indeed, if there’s a weakness to this performance, it’s that Williams’s voice ranges through such extremes of volume and projection that it’s hard to know where to set one’s volume controls. A one-disc biography of Dante read by John Shrapnel accompanies the production. Shrapnel’s voice is full of sympathy over Dante’s exile, but his primary quality as a reader is intense clarity; he handles complex political explanations smoothly and seems at ease with the Italian. G.T.B. © AudioFile 2005, Portland, Maine [Published: AUG/SEP 05]

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Formats

Trade Ed. • Naxos AudioBooks • 2004

CD ISBN $89.98 • Thirteen CDs

DD ISBN $14.99

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