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BSA Bulletin for April 2016

New Honorary Fellows

The British Shakespeare Association is delighted to announce that its 2016 Honorary Fellowship Awards are to be given to Emeritus Professor Ann Thompson and to Emeritus Director and Co-Founder of the RSC John Barton. The BSA will be formally honouring Ann and John at the 2016 conference in Hull in a special event, more details of which will be announced shortly. Our full notice can be found here.

BSA exclusive competition: win a pair of tickets to the World Book Night 2016 Gala Evening at the British Library

Courtesy of the British Library, we’re offering BSA members the chance to win tickets to a gala evening on Saturday 23rd April, 7pm-8.30pm, marking #Shakespeare’s birthday and the 400th anniversary of his death. Cathy Rentzenbrink, author of The Last Act of Love, will introduce World Book Night authors past and present, including Matt Haig, Dreda Say Mitchell, S J Parris, Holly Bourne and Sathnam Sanghera.
To enter, simply visit and enter the code BSA. The competition closes on Thu 14 April at 5pm and the winner will be notified shortly after.

Disability and Shakespearean Theatre Symposium

Registration is now open for ‘Disability and Shakespearean Theatre’, a conference supported by the BSA, taking place at the University of Glasgow on 20 April 2016. The symposium will be followed by the premier of Molly Ziegler’s new play Let Her Come In, a one-act rewriting of Hamlet focused on mental illness, gender and disability. Attendance is FREE to BSA members in good standing. For the full schedule and to register, please visitthe conference website.

BSA Journal – new articles

New articles published online this month include Kavita Mudan Finn’s essayon transformative fanworks based on Shakespeare’s history plays and several new reviews of Shakespeare productions in Stratford-upon-Avon and London. Current members can subscribe to the journal – including the physical volume and full online access – at the heavily discounted price of £15. Contact for details and missing volumes.

BSA Event Videos

Our website now hosts video recordings of BSA events. Members can currently watch the inauguration of Chris Grace and Dame Janet Suzman as honorary fellows of the association, complete with their reflections on their work with Shakespeare. A taster of the recording is available to all on the website, and members in good standing for the current year have been emailed a password for the full recording.

Teaching Shakespeare issue 9 now published

Issue 9 of the BSA magazine Teaching Shakespeare was published last month. This issue includes a bumper noticeboard and royally ushers in the year with two articles on the Henry IV plays by Michael J. Collins and Howard Gold. Submissions for Issue 10 can be sent to the journal editor . Issue 9 can be downloaded from the BSA website.

Teaching Shakespeare: Call for contributions on Vietnamese Shakespeare

Dr Sarah Olive, chair of the BSA Education Committee and editor ofTeaching Shakespeare, is seeking contributions focusing on Shakespeare in Vietnamese education. Anyone with experience of learning or teaching Shakespeare in Vietnam can email to be part of this British Academy-funded project. For more information, see the full call on our website.

Preparing for Hull 2016

The BSA’s 2016 conference, ‘Shakespearean Transformations: Death, Life, and Afterlives’, takes place 8-11 September 2016 at the University of Hull. The conference will include a full education strand as well as an exciting range of concerts, performances, presentations and paper sessions. Registration for the conference will open soon, and all participants must be members of the BSA in good standing. Please visit the conference website for full details.

Bardolph’s Box: An Introduction to Shakespeare

The BSA is pleased to be supporting Up the Road Theatre’s Bardolph’s Box, a theatre production designed by BSA member Nicola Pollard for children aged 8-12 and their families. This 40-minute piece, featuring a number of lesser-known plays and characters, finishes its tour of Kent and the North West in April. For more information, please see the company website.


We are pleased to advertise news and activities by our members and other Shakespeare associations. If you would like to advertise a Shakespeare-related activity, please email Items below are not affiliated with or endorsed by the BSA – please use individual contact details for more information.

Julius Caesar actor training and performance in Sri Lanka

DUENDE & Stages Theatre Company invite you to attend ‘The Evil That We Do’, a fifteen-day, residential ensemble physical training course culminating in a public performance based on Julius Caesar, taking place in Sri Lanka in May. Fees (£350 for international visitors) include all accommodation and food. Applications are open to emerging and working performers from around the world. For more details, please visit the company website.


Shakespeare:Birmingham organises weekly gatherings / Shakespeare play readings at the Birmingham & Midland Institute in the centre of Birmingham (Tuesdays, 6.30-9.00pm) and monthly workshops aimed at increasing enjoyment of Shakespeare through any means possible! We are currently reading King Lear, all are welcome to attend. For details of meetings, please visit the website at, which also lists all Shakespeare productions happening in the area.

Shakespeare’s Friends and Rivals, 9 April 2016, London Metropolitan Archives

Eva Griffith leads a day of theatre history and biography based around the Red Bull playhouse and the people who lived in the area. The day includes examinations of seventeenth-century documents, an actor-led exploration of new evidence surrounding the death of Shakespeare, a conversation with actor and director Sonia Ritter, and a walking tour around Clerkenwell. For more information and to book, please visit .

Metamorphosis at Senate House Library

Senate House Library is commemorating the 400th anniversary of Shakespeare’s death with a season of activities running from 14 April to 17 December, including a free exhibition, a programme of events and a website with digital content and research resources. Based loosely on the ‘seven ages of man’ speech from As You Like It, the season will reflect the changes in Shakespearean text and scholarship over four centuries. For full details, please visit the website.

Shakespeare’s Musical Brain, 16 April 2016, King’s College London

The Musical Brain is convening a special conference to commemorate the 400th anniversary of Shakespeare’s death. ‘Shakespeare’s Musical Brain’ will include talks from academics, composers and neurologists, examining the relationship between words and music in aesthetic and scientific terms, and how it affects the relationship between actor and audience then as now. A limited number of student tickets are available at £35; full price £95. Seethe website for full details.

Call for Papers: Shakespeare in Latin America

The Institute of Literature at Universidad de los Andes (Santiago, Chile) is organising an international conference that will bring together scholars around the topic of the presence of his works within the Latin American canon, either in the existing tradition of translating his plays and poems by writers, poets, and academics, or in the re-writing and adaptation for performance. Abstracts are due 22 April 2016. For more information, please visit the conference website.

Bard by the Beach Shakespeare Festival in Morecambe

From 22-24 April, Morecambe will be hosting a major Shakespeare festival. Events include five adaptations of Shakespeare’s plays, Shakespeare Comedy Dinner Theatre, a midnight screening of Theatre of Blood, workshops on acting and stage fighting, wine tastings, music from the Haffner Orchestra celebrating orchestral Shakespeare, a night of The Bard on Broadway, a puppet version of Forbidden Planet and even a historical and artisan market. For more details, please visit the website.

BBC Radio Lancashire celebrates Shakespeare

On Sunday 24th April, 7.30-9.30pm, Ted Robbins is your host as the Bard’s best bits, chosen by BBC Radio Lancashire’s presenters, are performed in a unique multimedia experience. The performance will take place in Hoghton Tower’s Great Barn, a suitable surrounding for the Bard’s works as we mark the 400th anniversary of his death. Tickets are £15 per person.

OCR GCSE English Conference 2016
The GCSE English Conference 2016 will be held on 6 June at Shakespeare’s Globe. All teachers working with GCSE-level students are invited to attend a day of practical workshops, discussions and networking opportunities, including a keynote conversation with Kazuo Ishiguro. There is an early booking discount for payments received before 30 April. For more information, please visit the conference website.

The Merchant of Venice in Venice, 27-28 July

The Shakespeare Birthplace Trust is organising a fundraising event in Venice to support its re-presentation of New Place. You are invited to attend a production of The Merchant of Venice in the Jewish ghetto (500 years old this year). Tickets (priced at £450) also include talks from Shakespeare experts and theatre practitioners, a three-course lunch at Locanda Cipriani, coffee and a drinks reception. For more information, or to reserve a place, please contact

Call for Papers:  ‘Shakespeare and his contemporaries’ Conference in Brazil

The ‘VI Jornada de Estudos Shakespeareanos: Shakespeare e seus contemporâneos’ will be held at Universidade de São Paulo (USP, São Paulo, 10-11 November 2016). Abstracts in English, Spanish or Portuguese are due 30 June 2016. For more information, please or

A Walk Around Shakespeare’s London

A Walk Around Shakespeare’s London is a self-guided walk that covers places that William Shakespeare lived and worked in London. Sites visited include The Theatre, The Curtain Theatre, Silver Street, Blackfriars and The Globe theatre. The website contains a downloadable route plan, or it can be used with a mobile device. The route also takes in a few other non-Shakespearean places of interest. The complete walk will take around three hours.

Shakespeare Documented online exhibition launched

Shakespeare Documented is a multi-institutional collaboration convened by the Folger Shakespeare Library to commemorate the 400th anniversary of Shakespeare’s death. This free online exhibition constitutes the largest and most authoritative collection of primary-source materials documenting the life of William Shakespeare (1564-1616). It brings together images and descriptions of all known manuscript and print references to Shakespeare, his works, and additional references to his family, in his lifetime and shortly thereafter.

BBC Shakespeare Archive now available to UK schools

The BBC has recently launched the BBC Shakespeare Archive Resource. This new online resource provides schools, colleges and universities across the UK with access to hundreds of BBC television and radio broadcasts of Shakespeare’s plays, sonnets and documentaries about Shakespeare. The material includes the first British televised adaptations of Othello and Henry V, classic interviews with key Shakespearean actors including John Gielgud, Judi Dench and Laurence Olivier, and more than 1000 photographs of Shakespeare productions.

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