Philadelphia Free Library Marking 450th Year Since Shakespeare’s Birth

By John McDevitt

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — The Free Library of Philadelphia today kicked off the “Year of the Bard: Shakespeare at 450.”

Today, actors from The Philadelphia Shakespeare Theater performed scenes from “Romeo & Juliet” in the lobby of the central library, at 19th and the Benj. Franklin Parkway, and students from West Philadelphia High School read short monologues from Shakespeare’s plays.


(Actors from the Philadelphia Shakespeare Theater perform a scene from "Romeo and Juliet."  Photo by John McDevitt)

(Actors from the Philadelphia Shakespeare Theater perform a scene from “Romeo and Juliet.” Photo by John McDevitt)

Sandra Horrocks, with the library, says there will be hundreds of events throughout the region this year to celebrate the 450th anniversary of Shakespeare’s birth, in 1564.

“We want to find different ways for people to engage the great literature,” she said today.  “We’ll have a special exhibition here at the Free Library showing the four folios.  One of the most extraordinary books in the world is the first folio, which we will have on view beginning in the end of January.  So there are many ways to think about it, to reconnect with Shakespeare, and have fun.”

There will also be film screenings, craft sessions, and a big 450th birthday day bash on April 23rd.

Also, look for specially brewed Shakesbeer, by Yards Brewing Company, at many of the celebrations.

For a list of events go

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