Richard Armitage, star of the The Hobbit and Neflix’s The Stranger, will narrate The Chekhov Collection of Short Stories for Amazon’s audiobook service, Audible, released on 11th June.
The collection will include six short stories written by the celebrated Russian writer Anton Chekhov, best known for writing plays such as The Seagull and Uncle Vanya.
Due to the lockdown, Armitage was unable to record the audiobook in a studio, as would normally be the case. Instead, the actor set himself up to record from home, as he explains in the below video:
While preparing to perform in Uncle Vanya at the Harold Pinter Theatre, London this year, Richard Armitage read some of Chekhov’s short stories for the first time.
“In his short stories Chekhov really exposes something in himself; he lets you into his heart and his mind a little bit more,” said Armitage.
The actor helped select six of the stories for the Audible collection which will be available to stream and download from the service from 11th June this year.
“We picked a selection of stories that I felt was quite relevant to who he was, what I was looking for, and the times we’re living in right now,” Armitage said.
Which stories are included in the Chekhov collection?
- Ward 6 - a patient in an asylum comes into conflict with a director of the institution.
- The Kiss - a man becomes infatuated by a woman who accidentally kisses him in the dark during a party.
- Betrothed - a young woman strives to asset her independence by choosing education over an arranged marriage.
- The Black Monk - an ageing scholar experiences strange hallucinations, but is her a genius or is he losing his mind?
- Neighbours - a beautiful young woman subverts society expectations by going to live with her neighbour, an older married man.
- The Student - a depressed young student has his spirits lifted by recounting a religious story to two strangers.
Also included in the collection, is an introduction from Richard Armitage discussing his research for his own Chekhov role, where he first encountered the stories selected for this collection.
To listen to the The Chekhov Collection of Short Stories, you can access the audiobook from your Audible account to stream as soon as it is released. If you don’t have one, you can sign up for a free 30 day trial.
The Chekhov stories are far from Armitage’s first to narrate, with the actor even being awarded Audiobook of the Year for his narration of Shakespeare’s Hamlet in 2014. Also narrated by The Stranger star are Angela Carter’s The Bloody Chamber, Charles Dickens’ David Copperfield, Joy Ellis’ Jackman and Evan series and The Monster Collection, which includes classics like Mary Shelley's Frankenstein and Bram Stoker's Dracula.
Anton Chekhov's short stories are also available to read and buy on Amazon. Ward 6, The Black Monk and The Student are included in Ward No. 6 and Other Stories and you can read more in The Complete Short Novels, About Love and Other Stories and Forty Stories.
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