Speaking of Shakespeare Link

Speaking of Shakespeare
During 2016 our signature Speaking of Shakespeare series at Manhattan's National Arts Club featured scintillating conversations with producer Ralph Alan Cohen, who introduced NAC constituents to the American Shakespeare Center in Virginia; director Karin Coonrod, who previewed a high-profile Merchant in Venice that marked the 500th anniversary of the original Ghetto; writers Alison Gopnik of the University of California at Berkeley and her brother Adam Gopnik of the New Yorker, who talked about the importance of play in early childhood development; Shakespeare Survey editor Peter Holland of the University of Notre Dame, who shared trenchant observations about a number of recent developments; educator Peggy O'Brien of the Folger Shakespeare Library, who talked about the support she and her colleagues provide for teachers and students around the nation; University of London professor Kiernan Ryan, who offered a new way of thinking about Shakespeare's "universality"; and director Louis Scheeder of NYU's Tisch School of the Arts, who described the kinds of preparation that are essential for aspiring drama professionals.

Along the way the Guild arranged an informative DC luncheon at the Woman's National Democratic Club with executive director Diana Owen of the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust in Stratford-upon-Avon. And we helped bring several events to Anerica's oldest capital city, a setting that dates back to the months in 1610 when a visionary playwright was contemplating a shipwreck that had occurred in our "brave new world" and composing The Tempest. In January we took part in a Lensic Performing Arts Center benefit that featured EVER THE TWAIN: William Shakespeare in Mark Twain's America, a revel that Craig Smith described in the Santa Fe New Nexican's Pasatiempo supplement. It played to an enthusiastic, sold-out house, and photographic highlights of it were captured by Steve Rudnick, whose wife Lois co-wrote the script with Jonathan Richards. In February we hosted a dialogue at the New Mexico Museum of Art with biographer Stephen H. Grant about Collecting Shakespeare: The Story of Henry and Emily Folger. And finally, during an October presentation that served as prelude for the Tempest we co-produced in August of 2017, we co-sponsored The Poet's Eye, a medley of Bardic music and verse that helped dedicate a new feature at the Santa Fe Botanical Garden: a magic circle that evokes such predecessors as a classical Greek amphitheater, a "Wooden O" like the Bankside Globe, and the Zia sun symbol that adorns New Mexico's state flag.

Many of these initiatives focused on the Folger Shakespeare Library, which commemorated the 400th anniverary of Shakespeare's death with a national tour of First Folios from its incomparable holdings. For background on this generous initaitive, which was previewed on NPR by Susan Stamberg, visit the website of Albuquerque station KUNM, where you'll find several links of interest, among them one that will permit you to hear Spencer Beckwith's conversation with Mary Kershaw, director of the New Mexico Museum of Art, and Guild president John Andrews. On May 10 Mr. Andrews joined the Santa Fe Opera Guild for a program that previewed a special SFO summer presentation of Charles Gounod's Romeo et Juliette. For background on these events and on several related offerings, including Thomas Leech's charming display about "Willy the Kid" at the historic Governor's Palace, visit KSFR's "Santa Fe Radio Cafe" and listen to Mary-Charlotte's program for February 17. And for a leading critic's perspective on an eventful "Shakespeare 400" Bardathon in La Tierra Encantada, see James Keller's remarks in Pasatiempo.

For details about offerings that have been presented in other seasons, click on the blue link for the year that interests you: 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015. And for information about upcoming programs, visit our Current Events page.