Things to Do

How You Can Celebrate Shakespeare’s Birthday at Home

Because we all could use a little celebration right now.

Coronavirus 2020

About Coronavirus 2020

Washingtonian is keeping you up to date on the coronavirus around DC.

Listen, times are tough and we need all the joy we can get. So why not celebrate Shakespeare’s birthday? (Though the exact date is unknown, it’s often observed on April 23.) Here are some ways you can do that from home.

Attend a Virtual Lecture on the Bard’s Life and Work

April 22 through May 13, DC’s Shakespeare Theatre Company will stream a new installment of “The Shakespeare Hour” Wednesdays at 7:30 PM. In each, artistic director Simon Godwin and resident dramaturg Drew Lichtenberg will talk about two thematically similar plays and examine why they remain classic works and how they reflect Shakespeare’s world.

The first installment, “Romance and Magic,” will look at Romeo and Juliet and A Midsummer’s Night’s Dream. Subsequent lectures will dissect Hamlet, Measure for Measure, King Lear, Macbeth, The Winter’s Tale, and The Tempest.

“The Shakespeare Hour” is free for STC members, season subscribers, and package holders; $10 for non-members.

Find more information here.

Share on Social Media

The Folger Shakespeare Library is encouraging people to #ShareYourShakespeare on social media. Through April 23, people can post tributes with the #ShareYourShakespeare and @FolgerLibrary tags to be featured on the Folger’s website. Suggestions include writing a sonnet, baking a Shakespearean dish, or acting out a scene from one of his plays.

Find more information here.

Check out the Folger Shakespeare Library’s Website

On April 23, the Folger will have a full day of lectures and virtual parties to celebrate the big day. Programming includes a discussion of why creative people appreciate Shakespeare, a breakdown of how he used food as an avenue to explore mental health, and a virtual watch party of Macbeth.

Find more information here.

Stream a Shakespeare play or movie

In addition to the many movie adaptations on streaming services such as Netflix and Hulu, many theater companies around the world are making recordings of their productions available to the public. Some are free, while others charge a nominal fee to help support furloughed employees.

Find more information here.

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Jane Recker
Assistant Editor

Jane is a Chicago transplant who now calls Cleveland Park her home. Before joining Washingtonian, she wrote for Smithsonian Magazine and the Chicago Sun-Times. She is a graduate of Northwestern University, where she studied journalism and opera.

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