In June 2016 Russia’s best known presenter, Vladimir Pozner, interviewed me as part of an excellent Russian documentary on William Shakespeare, shown on Channel One, the Russian equivalent of the BBC.
The documentary is about Shakespeare’s relationship with power and I took Vladimir on a specially commissioned tour of London sites with relevance to that theme, and was interviewed by him for 30 minutes.
The link to the documentary is below - just be aware that the documentary is dubbed into Russian for a Russian audience.
If you are interested, I appear at around 9.20 minutes; 17.20 minutes; 27.33 minutes; and 41.56 minutes, alongside people such as Cate Blanchett and Ralph Fiennes.
By the way, if anyone can translate Russian I would love to know what I said!
Among the thousands who attend my tour wanting to learn more about William Shakespeare have been some highly successful people.
In 2016 I had Dr. Peter Ammon (the German Ambassador to the United Kingdom), eminent Japanese Shakespeare translator Ms. Kazuko Matsuoka; Chris Gifford (the creator of ‘Dora the Explorer’), and Miles Millar (the writer of ‘Smallville’).
I have also previously had the multi-award winning Australian artist, Imants Tillers, also one of the Twelve Elders of the Mormon religion, and Antonio Vega (R.I.P) of influential Spanish pop/rock group Nacha Pop.
I have been proud to better acquaint them, and thousands of other people from all walks of life, with Shakespeare’s life and personality.
Other high profile people are mentioned in the following Testimonials section.
Thomas Donnarumma, Chairperson, The Fine and Performing Arts Department, The Iona College Theatre Program: “excellent information not found on a typical walking tour”
Bruce Feiler six times New York Times bestselling author of books such as 'Walking the Bible' and 'The secrets of happy families', said about my tour: "Declan brings the hidden alleyways and London life of Shakespeare alive".
Jan MalmsjoThe 'Swedish Olivier', who acted the bishop in Bergman's classic film 'Fanny and Alexander', wrote about my tour: "Great and interesting and funny"
Rob McCaskill New York-based acting teacher of Bernadette Peters, Michelle Rodrigez ('The Fast and the Furious', 'Avatar') etc, said about my tour: "A trip back in time. Wonderfully imaginative. Don't miss it"
Professor Owen Thompson, 12th July 2013: "Declan combines scholarly expertise with entertaining verve and flair. Excellent tour!"
WHAT 'SHAKESPEARE IN THE CITY WALK' IS ALL ABOUT:
This 1 hour 45 minutes leisurely tour does not go to the Globe Theatre (because everyone already knows it). Instead it uncovers lesser-known monuments and locations in the City of London, on the North bank of the Thames, with connections to Shakespeare's life, his friends, and his work.
The film 'Anonymous' proposes that William Shakespeare did not write his plays. I believe that William Shakespeare DID write his plays and therefore this may not be the tour for you if you refuse to believe that. Instead you can go on somebody else's tour. I do not propose to spend the tour arguing this point, I will just get on with showing you aspects of William Shakespeare's London.
Here is a short clip of my appearance on BBC television on 28th May 2013, discussing Shakespeare's London with presenter Wendy Hurrell.
A slightly longer version, with a bit of a speech by me from 'As You Like It', can be seen here if you copy the following into your browser:
Visit the only two exact locations in London of Shakespeare houses
See the practically unknown hidden monument created from one of Shakespeare's best-known speeches
Go to the site of the Blackfriars Theatre, the lost sister theatre to the Globe
See the spot where we believe 'Othello', 'King Lear' and 'Macbeth' were written
Discover what Shakespeare was like as a man, including his complicated personal life
Visit Church locations Shakespeare knew
Hear some sublime Shakespeare speeches. I am a former professional actor and I illustrate what I talk about with Shakespeare's own immortal words. This feature of the walk is one that people especially love.
MEETING TIME AND PLACE: 11am on Friday mornings outside the only exit at Blackfriars underground station (Circle and District lines).
The meeting place for this Tour is right outside that underground station's only exit, a few feet away on the pavement. Look for the sign with Shakespeare's head on my rucksack when you emerge from the station onto the pavement. The sign is at knee-level not eye-level.
*** W A R N I N G *** Before you set off to come to your walk, I very strongly suggest that you add an extra 15-20 minutes to your travel time to compensate for possibly getting stuck in one (or more) of London's extremely frequent tube train delays.
Unfortunately, people who turn up late will miss this walk since I have to start the walk with the people who turn up on time.
Just to be clear about this, if you miss the start of the walk for any reason, you will then miss the entire walk since I turn up off my mobile when I begin, and you won't be able to find me in the side-streets.
The sad reality is that hundreds have missed my walks...*** W A R N I N G ***
There will be no walk on Friday March 10th 2017.
On the morning of the walk you plan to come on, always ring the telephone number given in the Contact section, in case I am on holiday. It's essential to ring in any case because unforeseen circumstances can happen once or twice a year meaning that a particular walk cannot take place.
"Highlight of trip" - Christine O'Grady, Australia
"Loved the speeches from Shakespeare himself" - Nicoletia, Italy.
"Magnificent eye-opening tour" - Kevin Connell
"Declan is the best guide in London" - Manfred and Heidi Gloag, Germany
"An absolute highlight of my travels to date...incredible insight into the world of Shakespeare" - Kylie Sandover, Australia
"Best thing I've done in 5 years of London living!" - Gemma Clarke
"Excellent - the highlight of my trip" - Geraldine Murphy, USA.
"Thank you for this superb, history-filled and inspiring experience" - Elizabeth Vandepaer, USA. "The most enthusiastic, friendly and interesting tour together with first class acting on the side" - Magnus, Sweden.
If you would rather have a private walk with me, you can always email me or give me a call at the number in the Contact section, and then we can discuss the private tour. I'm sometimes (but not always) willing to do private tours on my days off.
The price is £13 per person with a minimum of 15 people per walk or the cash equivalent if fewer than 15 people turn up, so that's 15 x £13= £195. It's the same minimum price - £195 - for a private tour whether one person comes along or 15 people come. If more than 15 are in the group it's just £13 more for each extra person.
ALWAYS CHECK THE MESSAGE:NB Updated details of times, engineering works and other underground line problems, are always given at 07905 746 733.
MY OTHER WALK
In case you are interested I also perform a very well-known London horror walk called 'The Blood and Tears Walk'five times a week.That one is edgy and disturbing - but also very entertaining - and will only cost you £6 if you come on this one first, otherwise it will cost £11 (undiscounted price). I also wrote a book on the dark side of London called 'Bloody London' which has sold 5,500 copies and been very well reviewed.
FINALLY:I really look forward to meeting you soon and providing fresh insights for you into the wonderful world of the genius William Shakespeare.