In Shakespeare’s Shoes – poetry competition winners!

As part of the V&A Shakespeare Festival this year, and in celebration of the 450th anniversary of Shakespeare’s birth on 23 April, the V&A teamed up with the Poetry Society’s Young Poets Network to launch a poetry competition inspired by Shakespeare.

The competition asked writers to imagine what it would be like to step into the shoes of one of Shakespeare’s most iconic characters – Ophelia, Desdemona, Hamlet or Richard III – and to write a poem either from the point of view of that character or of the actor playing them.

We were thrilled with the huge numbers of entries to the competition – and with the fascinating, varied and beautiful results!

We are now delighted to announce the six winners, and to share their brilliant poems with you:

Hamlet by Adam Possener

Skull Shop by Annabelle Fuller

My Crown, My Soul by Crystal Grimshaw

Player King by Jessica Matthews

Of one that loved not wisely, but too well by Kathryn Cussons

The smiling skull of sadness by Louise Watson

Many thanks to all our writers for your wonderful work!

If you feel inspired by our Shakespeare poems, there’s lots more Shakespeare activity at the Museum, including a Shakespeare trail to follow around the building and  Shakespeare: Greatest Living Playwright – a special display in the Theatre and Performance Galleries (until 21 September).


Boots worn by Henry Irving in Richard III, 1877 © Victoria and Albert Museum, London


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