Beginning on October 3, the Shakespeare Theatre Association (STA) will release videos made exclusively for an international campaign entitled 38 Reasons to Love Shakespeare. The videos are part of a year-long celebration of the world’s most beloved playwright, marking the 400th anniversary of William Shakespeare’s passing and the start of a legacy that reaches across cultures and creeds throughout our civilization.
This year has seen countless thousands of events mounted around the world by individuals, theaters, libraries, museums, schools, and more. STA, whose members represent 43 American states and 13 countries, is thrilled to be playing a key part in this global celebration. STA’s Legacy 400 is coordinating and promoting events at more than 100 member theatres throughout the year, providing the public with exciting ways to explore Shakespeare’s relevance in the world today.
In January, STA launched www.weareshakespeare.com, an online hub for quadricentennial events. It includes a video gallery called We Are Shakespeare, which features videos of testimonials, performances, and other tributes, including on-the-spot quoting of famous lines, animations, and creative parodies of the plays. In 38 Reasons to Love Shakespeare, a special component of this festival, member theaters use Shakespeare’s own words to express why they love his plays. “Each Shakespeare-producing company was tasked with choosing a specific line from one of the 38 plays that best represents a reason why they prefer his works. They came up with varied but important reasons that illustrate how their company approaches Shakespeare,” says Legacy 400 Co-Chair Kristin Clippard.Theaters from Argentina, Canada, Germany, and all over the United States have participated in 38 Reasons. Their videos will be posted on Facebook and Twitter in the coming weeks, and will be screenedat the 2017 STA conference, hosted by the Chesapeake Shakespeare Company in Baltimore, MD, in January.
Hosted by the University of Notre Dame in South Bend, IN, the ambitious We Are Shakespeare project aims to archive these and other videos devoted to Shakespeare made in 2016. Individuals and companies are encouraged to add to the gallery. Participation is free and open to all, with submissions being accepted all year long. For details on how to submit videos, which can be shot on smartphone, computer or other digital recording device, go to: www.weareshakespeare.com.
The Shakespeare Theatre Association (STA) is an international organization of Shakespeare festivals and theatres. STA provides a forum for the artistic, managerial, and educational leadership for theatres primarily involved with the production of the works of William Shakespeare; to discuss issues and methods of work, resources, and information; and to act as an advocate for Shakespearean productions and training. For updated information about the Legacy 400 initiatives, visit www.STAhome.org and follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram @BardSTA.