Fictionista, Foodie, Feline-lover

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Shakespeare in DC--the Folger Library

The Folger Shakespeare Library is located in Washington, on Capitol Hill, not far from the multiple museums that make up the Smithsonian. It is a wonderful place, homethe world’s largest and finest collection of Shakespeare materials and to major collections of other rare Renaissance books, manuscripts, and works of art.  There is an Elizabethan garden on the grounds, and the actual building is so lovely you can rent it for events.
Photo by Julie Ainsworth
Imagine mounting a play in this jewelbox of a theater.
For people who can't visit in person, they have a lively Digital Folger program that includes podcasts (Shakespeare in American life), lectures, audio tours of the grounds and exhibitions, poetry readings, acting tutorials, play deconstruction, and recordings from the Folger Consort.  They also have a variety of newsletters to serve a variety of interests, particularly teachers and academics. You can find the catalogue for the library here.
They also have a great gift store with t-shirts and posters and prints and all the other stuff you expect from a museum gift shop. There are some lovely posters, including a map of Shakespeare's Britain, nesting dolls of Henry VIII and his wives and the t-shirt I got my brother as a present when he graduated from law school--decorated with the quotation, "The first thing we do, let's kill all the lawyers."
In September it will be the first stop in the US tour of a new Shakespeare's Globe production of Hamlet, starringMichael Benz and directed by Dominic Dromgoole and Bill Buckhurst. 

Here's a little teaser for the production, which is touring the UK now.

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