“Shakespeare unter den Deutschen” (Shakespeare among the Germans)

2014 is not only the 450th anniversary of Shakespeare’s birth, but also the 150th anniversay of the foundation of the “Deutsche Shakespeare-Gesellschaft”. To celebrate this occassion, and in order to disucss the reception of Shakespeare in Germany, a conference will be organised by the Academy of Science and Literature, Mainz.

New York

The culmination of the project will be marked by the release of a full Sonnet Project Anthology, complete with special features exploring the textual nuances of the language, behind-the-scenes footage and interviews with the creators and actors.

Throughout the release year, the NY Shakespeare Exchange will
• create an interactive Sonnet Project website available to educators and Shakespeare-lovers of all ages.
• develop a Sonnet Project mobile app for the delivery of each new sonnet video, which will provide access to text analysis and information about the NYC film locations.
• introduce sonnet-based walking tours of NYC neighborhoods.
• host Sonnet Project scavenger hunts making use of QR codes and mobile technology.
• present sonnet-based events that will bring together artists of all kinds to explore the poetry through a variety of styles and approaches.

United Kingdom

  • Shakespeare Week will offer children the chance to take part in creative and cultural learning experiences in schools and outside the classroom.
  • The ‘Shakespeare Week’ website brings together free resources for teachers and promotes events and activities in cultural and heritage organisations nationwide.
  • Every child whose school participates in Shakespeare Week will receive the Passport to Shakespeare encouraging them to continue learning at school, beyond the classroom and with their families.


Lorsqu’il adapte Roméo et Juliette, le librettiste Felice Romani choisit de remonter, par-delà Shakespeare, aux sources italiennes du mythe. Il resserre l’intrigue, faisant table rase de Mercutio, de la nourrice, du clair de lune et du rossignol… Le drame s’assombrit : la querelle entre les deux familles devient une véritable guerre. La première rencontre des amants est rejetée hors-scène et la réconciliation finale rendue impossible. Dans le titre même que retient Bellini, les noms de Capulet et deMontaigu éclipsent ceux de Roméo et de Juliette, tout comme le conflit empoisonne leur amour. Mais l’opéra ressuscite également une scène que Shakespeare avait omise : lorsque Juliette – que Roméo croyait morte – s’éveille dans la tombe, les deux amants peuvent échanger quelques mots avant de s’endormir à jamais. Et le chant de ces vies, qui se croisent et s’entremêlent, illumine un instant le monde d’une lumière bouleversante. Sous la direction de Bruno Campanella, Ekaterina Siurina et Karine Deshayes prêtent leurs voix aux amants qu’enveloppe la musique intensément dramatique de Bellini.

Bruno Campanella Direction musicale
Robert Carsen Mise en scène
Michael Levine Décors et costumes
Davy Cunningham Lumières
Alessandro di Stefano Chef de choeur

Paul Gay Capellio
Ekaterina Siurina Giulietta
Karine Deshayes Romeo
Charles Castronovo Tebaldo
Nahuel di Pierro Lorenzo

Orchestre et chœur de l’Opéra de Paris

United Kingdom

The festival inspires young people from 8-18 to challenge themselves through performing. SSF is the UK’s largest youth drama festival. Each autumn, four schools a night perform four different half-hour Shakespeare plays in their local professional theatre.

Workshop 2: “So Rare a Wonder’d Father”: the Cult of Shakespeare and the Father Figure

Is Bardolatry unconsciously constructed on the father figure? A large bulk of criticism has helpfully chalked up the rise of Bardolatry to the attendant shifts in literary taste as well as the concomitant social and historical frameworks. In fact, a novel emphasis ought to be put on the shifting symbolic connotations of the gradual idealization of Shakespeare as the father first of the English-speaking world and then of the Western civilization. Since the dawn of Bardolatry in the 1730s-1740s, the discourse on Shakespeare has often trodden on the latent ground of fatherhood, sublimated as a model of literary authority. It is our contention that fatherhood in its subsequent modern embodiments informs the historically and ideologically varied models of literary authority underlying the different stages of Bardolatry.

The cult of Shakespeare’s literary fatherhood seems to have progressed through four stages: the Literary Father, the Divine Father, the English Father, the Oedipal Father. The Literary Father was the first and most natural embodiment of the idea. Arguably, the first emergence of Shakespeare’s fatherhood was aptly donned in the Hamletic garb of the fatherly revenant, as in Charles Gildon’s 1699 Beauty the Best Advocate, whose epilogue has Shakespeare’s ghost berate the constant revisions of his work. In a process running under trace from the Restoration to mid-eighteenth century, Shakespeare as the Literary Father is gradually assimilated to the figure of the Divine Father. Dryden claims that Shakespeare “created the stage among us”; Philippe Le Tourneur, the author of the 1776 French translation, explicitly calls him “le dieu créateur de l’art sublime du théâtre”. The Romantic emphasis on the Shakespearean sublime, the peak pictured by Lessing as der Gipfel, also works along the lines of the recognition of a superhuman father figure to be placed on the highest pedestal, “the greatest man that ever put on and put off mortality” (Coleridge). This process gains further momentum in the 19th century: Alexandre Dumas simply grants Shakespeare the status of a second God, and Ralph Waldo Emerson hails him as an unrecognised god. Shakespeare has virtually become the celestial father, “making the heaven of heavens thy dwelling place” (Matthew Arnold). And a very English Father as well, thanks to the sublimation that accompanies the Victorian rise of nationalism and presents Shakespeare as the ultimate father who imparts his benign blessing on the colonial, “civilising” enterprise. Shakespeare looms large as a sort of idealized father of the English-speaking world, in a process ranging from academia to child literature. The next and last step sees Shakespeare’s English fatherhood trascend into universal paternity as the ultimate source of influence and authority for the (Western) world: the Oedipal Father, whose paradoxical triumph in the face of the evaporation of the father figure is still palpable today in the so-called Shakespeare industry, has settled in. It is not only Freud that presents Shakespeare as the father who also explores the unconscious relationships with (and revolt against) one’s own father: more generally, “papà Shakespeare” (Verdi) gradually becomes the template for the sublime fatherhood of the creator of the human mind. Unser Shakespeare‘s fatherly figure still prospers on, undaunted if not actually enriched by the post-war demise of the English colonies and the 1968-fuelled, Lacan-tinged rebellion against the paternalist father, a revolt that is often tellingly polarized in fiction around Shakespearean fathers such as Shylock or Prospero.

This issue addresses several theoretical questions that deserve a closer scrutiny: for instance, is the notion of Shakespeare’s sublimated fatherhood related to the different conceptions of the earthly and the celestial father? Does Bardolatry merely adapt the coeval notions of earthly/celestial fatherhood, or does it powerfully open up new versions of those very social and cultural models? Is Bardolatry more poignantly expressed when the patriarchal figure (or religious faith) is at its weakest or its strongest? Can we detect any significant differences in the sublimation of Shakespeare’s authority when either a Queen or a King is sitting on the English throne? And is Shakespeare’s literary fatherhood sublimated as a male figure, an authority figure or a mixture of both?

We propose to work on this issue by setting up a workshop open to all avenues of critical theory, from traditional philology to psychoanalysis, from new historicism and gender to cultural and post-colonial studies. Our intended format includes a set of position papers followed by a roundtable discussion.

Please send a 250-word abstract of your proposed paper by 30 September 2013 to [->] stating your name, email address and affiliation.


During the 2013-2014 Season, the Cincinnati Shakespeare Company will be celebrating its 20th season of being Cincinnati’s Stage for the Classics.

This special season, CSC will become one of only five theaters in the United States to “Complete the Canon” by producing all 38 plays by William Shakespeare.


Où, pourquoi, comment le monde commémore-t-il Shakespeare ?

Ces questions et d’autres posées par l’œuvre de Shakespeare sera le sujet de notre congrès à Paris, du 21 au 27 avril 2014, lorsque des théâtres, des salles de concert, des musées, des bibliothèques et d’autres lieux célèbreront le 450e anniversaire de sa naissance.

Le programme comportera également des conférences plénières, des panels, des séminaires et des performances.

À bientôt, rendez-vous à Paris.


Where, why, how does the world commemorate Shakespeare?

These and other questions raised today by Shakespeare’s works will be addressed during our Paris conference, 21-27 April 2014, when theatres, concert halls, museums, libraries and other venues celebrate his 450th birthday.

The program will include plenary lectures, panels, seminars and performances.

A bientôt, rendez-vous in Paris.



Publication of a special issue of Cahiers Jean Vilar devoted to the role and function of Shakespeare in the history of the Avignon Festival since its creation by Jean Vilar in 1947. The Maison Jean Vilar will collaborate with artists (mainly stage directors) and academics to provide a multi-faceted approach.