April 13, 2010 "Shakespeare's Birthday Reading" At Library of Congress on April 20

Press Contact: Donna Urschel (202) 707-1639
Public Contact: Patricia Gray (202) 707-1308

The Bard’s words will come alive at the Library of Congress on April 20, with performances by 16 professional actors from the Shakespeare Theater Company’s Academy for Classical Acting at The George Washington University.

The Poetry-at-Noon event will take place from noon to 1 p.m. on Tuesday, April 20, three days prior to Shakespeare’s 446th birthday. It will be held in the Whittall Pavilion on the ground floor of the Library’s Thomas Jefferson Building, 10 First St., S.E., Washington, D.C. The program is free and open to the public; tickets and reservations are not required.

“This annual Shakespeare birthday program might also be called ‘The Best of the Bard’ because of the tremendous talent on display,” said Patricia Gray, head of the Library’s Poetry and Literature Center.

The Poetry-at-Noon series has included a Shakespeare birthday program with the Academy of Classical Acting for the past 10 years, but only in the past two years have the readings become live scenes in which tender words of love or swashbuckling swordplay hold equal sway.

Gary Logan, director of the Academy of Classical Acting, will introduce the actors: Michael Abts, Dave Bobb, Maxon Davis, Ben Eckstein, Kurt Elftmann, Catherine Frels, Megan Gaffney, Jennifer Hopkins, Thomas Keegan, Nafeesa Monroe, Monica Parks, Paul Reisman, Laura Rocklyn, Colin Ryan, Nikki Weaver and Jan Wikstrom.

Logan is the author of “The Eloquent Shakespeare: A Pronouncing Dictionary for the Complete Works, with Notes to Untie the Modern Tongue” (University of Chicago Press, 2009). From 1993-2005, he was chair of voice and speech at the National Theatre Conservatory and the voice, text and dialect coach for the Tony Award-winning Denver Center Theatre Company. He has taught Shakespearean voice and text at Canada’s National Voice Intensive, and was a voice and dialect coach for the Stratford Festival of Canada during five seasons.

Founded in 1800, the Library of Congress is the nation’s oldest federal cultural institution and the largest library in the world, with nearly 145 million items in various languages, disciplines and formats. As the world’s largest repository of knowledge and creativity, the Library is a symbol of democracy and the principles on which this nation was founded. The Library serves the U.S. Congress and the nation both on-site, in its reading rooms on Capitol Hill, and through its award-winning website at www.loc.gov. Many of the Library’s rich resources and treasures may also be accessed via interactive exhibitions on a personalized website at myLOC.gov.


PR 10-074
ISSN 0731-3527