Monday February 27, 2017

Glenn Dixon on giving Shakespearean love advice

Every year, thousands of letters from around the world arrive in Verona, Italy, addressed to Juliet Capulet, seeking advice in matters of the heart.

Every year, thousands of letters from around the world arrive in Verona, Italy, addressed to Juliet Capulet, seeking advice in matters of the heart. (Desiree Bilon)

Listen 10:36

Every year, thousands of letters from around the world arrive in Verona, Italy, addressed to Juliet Capulet, seeking advice in matters of the heart. Luckily for the lovelorn, Juliet has a group of dedicated secretaries to read and answer these letters. Glenn Dixon, a high school English teacher, travelled from Calgary to Verona to take on this task, hoping it would heal his own broken heart. Dixon chronicles his journey in Juliet's Answer.

Letters to Juliet

I first heard about this only because I taught Romeo and Juliet in high school. I don't think anyone knows when the letters first started arriving. Now they get more than 10,000 letters a year from all over the world. They all arrive in this in this little office in Verona. There's this group of remarkable women who answer every single letter. The vast majority come from young women. We get a lot of letters like "Dear Juliet, can you send me my Romeo?" But every once in a while, there are letters of true heartbreak. You're there to be an empathetic ear, to give them hope and give them some comfort.

What he's learned about love 

We sometimes fall into the trap of idea that there's this one person in the world for us. And that's it. That's the idea of fate. You're fated to be with that one person. I don't think that's true.