V&A's Cakespeare has bakers making Bard inspired cakes for Shakespeare's birthday

By Culture24 Reporter | 14 April 2014

A Cakespeare competition, launched by the V&A to bake a cake for the Bard's 450th birthday, has resulted in some weird and wonderful creations

a photo of Jane Asher with a cake
Jane Asher launches Cakespeare© Victoria and Albert Museum, London
First there was Edible Masterpieces – the Art Fund’s clever idea to tap into the cake-making boom and raise a bit of cash for museums and galleries, then there was Turner Contemporary and Tate Liverpool going head to head in a Mondrian bake-off.

Now the V&A is getting in on the act with Cakespeare – an invitation to make Bard-inspired cakes.

Celebrating the 450th birthday of Shakespeare on April 23 and the launch of their own Shakespeare Festival, the museum is inviting bakers with a literary bent to get baking Shakey-cakes and upload pictures of them to social media.

Actress Jane Asher kicked off the competition last week with a Shakespeare-inspired doorstep weighing in at a whopping 15kg, featuring Shakespeare at his writing table with a scroll listing the 36 plays listed in Shakespeare’s First Folio. A copy of the latter is on display in the V&A’s Theatre and Performance Galleries.

Judging by the activity on Twitter and Pinterest, the nation’s bakers have made a reasonable response to this ambitious offering. Efforts range from grisly recreations of Richard III, Act 1, Scene 4, to a beautiful fondant and sponge representation of Desdemona’s handkerchief.

Baker Cathy Hail’s Bottom Cake features the prostrate eponymous character from A Midsummer Night’s Dream, while another macabre effort memorialises Chiron and Demetrius, who were baked in a pie during Titus Andronicus.

The winner of Cakespeare will be selected by Jane Asher and Geoff Marsh, the Director of the V&A's Department of Theatre and Performance. The prize is a weekend for two in Stratford-upon-Avon and tickets to see the Royal Shakespeare Company.

Photos have to be tagged with the hashtag #Cakespeare and must be uploaded by 4 May 2014.

For more information visit the V&A's website. The V&A’s Shakespeare Festival runs from April 21 – May 4 2014. Visit www.vam.ac.uk/page/s/shakespeare/

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