This installment of “Conversations at the Newberry” celebrates the Bard’s 450th birthday with Chicago Shakespeare Theater Founder and Artistic Director Barbara Gaines and Gail Kern Paster, director emerita of the Folger Shakespeare Library, discussing Shakespeare as literature, and as performance.
Barbara Gaines has directed more than 30 of Shakespeare’s plays. Honors include: the Tony Award for Outstanding Regional Theatre; the prestigious Honorary OBE (Officer of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire) in recognition of her contributions strengthening British-American cultural relations; and Joseph Jefferson Awards for Best Production (Hamlet, Cymbeline, King Lear and The Comedy of Errors), and for Best Director (Cymbeline, King Lear and The Comedy of Errors). She received the Public Humanities Award from the Illinois Humanities Council, and the Spirit of Loyola Award. Ms. Gaines has received an Honorary Doctorate of Letters from University of Birmingham (UK). She serves on the Shakespearean Council of Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre in London and is a Life Trustee of Northwestern University. She directed Giuseppe Verdi’s Macbeth at the Lyric Opera.
Gail Kern Paster directed the Folger Shakespeare Library in Washington, D.C., from 2002 until 2011. The Folger houses the world’s largest collection of Shakespeare materials as well as collections of rare Renaissance materials. As director, Paster helped make the Folger’s sources more accessible to the public, strengthened its educational mission, modernized its physical infrastructure, and built up its development and financial management. Under her leadership, the library created a new division devoted to K–12 education and launched its first seminar program for undergraduates. Paster is author of numerous articles and three books—most recently Humoring the Body: Emotions and the Shakespearean Stage—and co-editor of several other volumes. She taught English at the George Washington University from 1974 to 2002, served as president of the Shakespeare Association of America, and edited the Shakespeare Quarterly. Her work has won her fellowships from the Woodrow Wilson, Andrew W. Mellon, and John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundations, and the National Endowment for the Humanities. She is a Newberry Library trustee.
“Conversations at the Newberry” is generoualy sponsored by Sue and Melvin Gray.
Free and open to the public; no registration required.