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Shakespeare & Beyond

Shakespeare & Beyond

The Shakespeare & Beyond blog features a wide range of Shakespeare-related topics: the early modern period in which he lived, the ways his plays have been interpreted and staged over the past four centuries, the enduring power of his characters and language, and more.

A summer Shakespeare adventure: 'Her Majesty’s Will' by David Blixt
Her Majesty's Will book cover
Shakespeare and Beyond

A summer Shakespeare adventure: 'Her Majesty’s Will' by David Blixt

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Author
Austin Tichenor

Austin Tichenor recommends an adventure novel starring a young Christopher Marlowe and William Shakespeare, who uncover a plot to assassinate Queen Elizabeth.

Q&A: Lolita Chakrabarti - The 'Red Velvet' playwright on 19th-century Black actor Ira Aldridge
Amari Cheatom as Ira Aldridge in Red Velvet
Shakespeare and Beyond

Q&A: Lolita Chakrabarti - The 'Red Velvet' playwright on 19th-century Black actor Ira Aldridge

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Shakespeare & Beyond

Lolita Chakrabarti shares historical context about pioneering 19th-century Black actor Ira Aldridge, the subject of her play Red Velvet, including a notable detail about his funeral in Poland which she learned after she’d written the play.

Birds of Shakespeare: The Eurasian blackbird
blackbird painting
Shakespeare and Beyond

Birds of Shakespeare: The Eurasian blackbird

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Author
Missy Dunaway

In A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Bottom sings a tune about blackbirds to keep up his courage when he finds himself in strange circumstances.

Shakespeare and the language of slavery
Shakespeare and Beyond

Shakespeare and the language of slavery

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Author
Dr. Judith Spicksley

A Folger fellow shares her research into the language of slavery in early modern England, and more specifically, the use of that language in the works of William Shakespeare.

What's onstage at Shakespeare theaters this summer
Shakespeare and Beyond

What's onstage at Shakespeare theaters this summer

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Author
Ben Lauer

Find out what’s onstage at Shakespeare theaters across the United States this summer.

Quiz: Which book should I read this summer?
Shakespeare and Beyond

Quiz: Which book should I read this summer?

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Author
Shakespeare & Beyond

Take our quiz to get matched with one of 20 books from the Folger Shakespeare Library’s virtual book club inspired by Shakespeare and the early modern era.

Five Folger Finds: Coronations, jubilees, and royal processions
Queen Elizabeth II in the Folger Reading Room
Shakespeare and Beyond

Five Folger Finds: Coronations, jubilees, and royal processions

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Author
Esther French

Did you know that Queen Elizabeth II visited the Folger in 1991? In honor of her Platinum Jubilee, dig into some royal history in the Folger collection.

Q&A: Director Sam Gold on his 'Macbeth' with Daniel Craig and Ruth Negga
Cast of Macbeth on a stage with Daniel Craig and Ruth Negga sitting on purple chairs
Shakespeare and Beyond

Q&A: Director Sam Gold on his 'Macbeth' with Daniel Craig and Ruth Negga

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Shakespeare & Beyond

Director Sam Gold shares what he loves most about Macbeth, why it stands out from other Shakespeare tragedies he’s directed, and how his ideas about the play changed over time.

Bothered by madness: 'Hamlet' and 'The Northman'
Alexander Skarsgård in The Northman
Shakespeare and Beyond

Bothered by madness: 'Hamlet' and 'The Northman'

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Author
Austin Tichenor

Robert Eggers’s “The Northman” is not an adaptation of “Hamlet,” but a film in conversation with Shakespeare’s play, Austin Tichenor writes.

Q&A: Allan Clayton on playing Hamlet in Brett Dean's opera
Allan Clayton as Hamlet
Shakespeare and Beyond

Q&A: Allan Clayton on playing Hamlet in Brett Dean's opera

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Shakespeare & Beyond

Hamlet sings! A new opera version of Shakespeare’s “Hamlet” is onstage now at the Metropolitan Opera, with tenor Allan Clayton resuming the title role that he played for the opera’s world premiere at the Glyndebourne Festival in 2017. Read our…

Q&A: Jacob Ming-Trent on Falstaff, Bottom, and Shakespeare’s comedy
Jacob Ming-Trent in MERRY WIVES
Shakespeare and Beyond

Q&A: Jacob Ming-Trent on Falstaff, Bottom, and Shakespeare’s comedy

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Shakespeare & Beyond

Jacob Ming-Trent shares a favorite moment from his Shakespeare in the Park performance as Falstaff in “Merry Wives,” which premieres on PBS’s Great Performances May 20.

Birds of Shakespeare: The cuckoo
cuckoo
Shakespeare and Beyond

Birds of Shakespeare: The cuckoo

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Author
Missy Dunaway

Thanks to its peculiar reproductive cycle, distant migration, and haunting melodies, the cuckoo may hold the title for most folklore among Shakespeare’s birds.

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