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Publisher's Summary

William Collins Books and Decca Records are proud to present Argo Classics, a historic catalogue of classic prose and verse read by some of the world’s most renowned voices. Originally released as vinyl records, these expertly remastered stories are now available to download for the first time.

For the first time, the complete works of Shakespeare are available to download as one. This collection includes all 37 plays, four narrative poems and the sonnets.

Performed by an incredible array of the 20th century’s greatest actors, Ian McKellen, Timothy West, Diana Rigg, Derek Jacobi, Roy Dotrice, Prunella Scales and many others can be heard in these recordings.

All of the Shakespeare plays within the Argo Classics catalogue are performed by the Marlowe Dramatic Society and Professional Players. The Marlowe was founded in 1907 with a mission to focus on effective delivery of verse, respect the integrity of texts and rescue neglected plays by Shakespeare’s contemporaries and the less performed plays of Shakespeare himself. The Marlowe has performed annually at Cambridge Arts Theatre since its opening in 1936 and continues to produce some of the finest actors of their generations.

Public Domain (P)2020 HarperCollins Publishers Limited

What listeners say about Shakespeare: The Complete Works

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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

No stage directions

Awesome performances. But lack of stage directions makes it hard to follow without knowing some about the play already or reading along.

7 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars

Some serious Errors in Release

Listeners should be aware that there are some errors with this release. Acts 3 and 4 of The Comedy of Errors are in the wrong order. The entirety of Act 5 Scene 2 of Love's Labour's Lost is just MISSING. Considering this is Shakespeare's longest scene of any of his plays, that's quite an oversight.

5 people found this helpful

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Exceptionally impressive!

I am amazed by how well these works of literature have been captured so well in this Audible production. You need to experience it for yourself! Well done!

1 person found this helpful

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    1 out of 5 stars
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Truncated

I was looking forward to Much ado about nothing and it's completely truncated . Chapter 1 begins with hero's wedding :( I'm returning the book

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  • J. T. Woosley
  • 2021-02-27

Great collection marred by a few missing sections

This is a great collection of most of Shakespeare's works. The only play that is missing is 'The Two Noble Kinsmen', a collaboration attributed to Shakespeare and John Fletcher. However, there are a few missing section in this collection as of the date I'm writing this review (26 Feb. 2021). Act V of 'King John' is missing as are Acts IV and V of 'Pericles'. Hopefully this is just an oversight and will be corrected.

97 people found this helpful

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  • Lawrence Carnow
  • 2021-05-20

BIGGER PROBLEMS THAN REPORTED

Example: Much Ado About Nothing

Act IV and part of Act V are Chapter 1
End of Act V Chapter 2
Act 3 Chapter 3
Act 1 is on Chapter 4.......

...... come on! Let' s see if Audible, or the manufacturer of the product, will do anything about this... and the other problems presented in the other reviews.

ADDENDUM: Pericles is missing Acts 4 and 5 (what does Audible and Argo Classics have against poor Pericles)? King John as reported elsewhere, is missing Act 5.

Wondering if Audible and/or Argo will fix the above.....

ADDENDUM TO THE ADDENDUM: Just listened to Love's Labors Lost.... there is only Act 5, scene 1. There is no Act 5, scene 2. And Act 5, scene 2 is the longest act in the entire play!

74 people found this helpful

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  • bobsie67
  • 2021-02-26

Technical Issues

Just started listening. These are remastered old recordings. The sound thus is full of echoes of the soundstage. Annoyingly, King John, Act V is missing. And this is the first play I listened to, so hoping the rest of the plays are complete. The actors are exceptional and I wish a pdf of each play's list of actors was included. Nice to listen along while reading the Riverside Shakespeare.

53 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • HelloThere
  • 2021-06-03

Not recommended for trying to sleep :)

I know this review won't be helpful to most. I listen to audiobooks to go to sleep, but there are horns at the start of the chapters. It kept waking me up! lol

49 people found this helpful

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  • Maria
  • 2021-04-27

Great resource but with problems

I love reading the plays while listening to this audiobook. It’s the best way for reading the plays, second only to watching a live performance.
However, I stumbled upon some issues. There are parts missing. I was listening to King John and the play jumps from the end of Act IV to the end credits.
Also I would like to know who the performers were for each play. I would also like to have a table of contents for each part of the audiobook to avoid having to guess when I want a specific play.

28 people found this helpful

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  • Stephanie
  • 2021-12-04

Shoddy Curation - Who Was in Charge of This?

Of course these are very old recordings, some 60+ years, so the lack of clarity is understandable. What is unforgivable, however, is selling something as The Complete Works when so many things are missing. Not only scenes, but entire acts are gone. Also very disappointing that not full cast list is available. I contacted Audible about this as initially the Title Details stated that full cast list was available but didn't say where. After a few days, I was told that a pdf was being prepared and would be available for download soon. More than a week later, I was informed than no such pdf would ever be available. Overall a very disappointing experience that Audible should rectify.

14 people found this helpful

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  • Jesse Richards
  • 2021-09-16

Poor overall unfortunately

Recording is not great, performances are mostly generic except for some bits of Henry IV Part 2, and multiple plays are missing sections. Unfortunately there are better ways to hear these then this collection.

9 people found this helpful

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  • GiniO
  • 2021-04-25

Can you recognize famous acting voices?

I found it most helpful to listen to a play while reading that play.

9 people found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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  • Geimle Burzeen
  • 2021-10-05

Very hard to navigate

There is no easily locatable table of contents. So you probably have to download the entire thing--nine parts--and check individual TOCs to find the particular play you want to hear. They're arranged alphabetically (for some reason). Can be frustrating.

8 people found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
  • OLDER shopper
  • 2021-07-05

poor quality

very difficult to understand due to poor recording. sounds like sitting in the doorway of a high school auditorium.

8 people found this helpful