Recorders have mostly become a joke in American culture. I think this is because we learn them in our elementary school music classes and never see them again. Also, because there is very little contemporary music written for the recorder. Has there ever been a recorder featured in a billboard charting popular song? Probably not.
I grew up listening to recorder duets, however. My mother and her friends played recorders. There was something satisfying to me about the sound. These recorders weren’t the crappy plastic ones. They were larger and wooden and the sound was rich and full. They played beautiful music.
My mother played recorder in a local production of Twelfth Night. I went to see it and fell in love. I don’t know that I knew it was Shakespeare at the time. All I knew was that show had been very exciting for me to watch. I got a thrill every time my mom wore her Twelfth Night t-shirt because it reminded me of the magic of it.
Given the circumstances, it is possible that the recorder is responsible for my working with Shakespeare today. O, was this wise?
O, the recorders.