Theatre in Time of Plague

A lunchtime celebration of William Shakespeare's 457th birthday at 12.30-2pm on 23 April 2021

skeletonJoin us for an online celebration of Shakespeare's birthday by joining a discussion with theatre practitioners and theatre historians.


12.30pm Welcome and Introductions by the Chair Prof Siobhan Keenan (DMU)

12.35-12-55 James Wallace and Iqbal Khan each speak for about 5-10 minutes on "How you have coped with the closure".

12.55-1.15pm Lucy Munro and James Shapiro each give a 5-10 minute talk on the historical background to plague closure. James Wallace and Iqbal Khan give their responses to the historical accounts and are invited to question the historians.

1.35-1.55pm Questions from online attendees.

1.55-2pm Closing remarks from the Chair

Iqbal KhanIqbal Khan is a freelance Theatre Director, with productions at the Royal Shakespeare Company, Shakespeare's Globe, Birmingham Rep, the Lyric Hammersmith, the Bolton Octagon, and elsewhere. He has directed in Paris, Japan, the UK, and held residencies and delivered lectures at institutions including Michigan State University and Lafayette College. He was the Michael Douglas Visiting Artist at the University of California, Santa Barbara, and has an Honorary Doctorate of Arts from De Montfort University.

Lucy MunroLucy Munro has published three books to date. The first, Children of the Queen’s Revels: A Jacobean Theatre Repertory (Cambridge University Press, 2005), focused on the most prominent of the children’s playing companies of early modern London. The second, Archaic Style in Early Modern Literature, 1590-1674 (Cambridge University Press, 2013), is a study of the ways in which early modern writers use linguistic, poetic or dramatic styles that would have seemed old-fashioned to their first audiences or readers. In 2020, the Arden Shakespeare published her book Shakespeare in the Theatre: The King's Men about the performance practices, cultural contexts and political pressures that helped to shape and reshape Shakespeare's plays between 1603 and 1642.

James WallaceJames Wallace, actor and director, has been involved with Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre for 20 years and has staged or taken part in 100+ performance of plays by Shakespeare’s contemporaries for its Read Not Dead project. With his theatre company The Dolphin's Back he staged the first modern revival of Marlowe's The Massacre At Paris at the Rose Playhouse Bankside and brought John Lyly's The Woman In The Moon to the candle-lit Sam Wanamaker Playhouse, the country's first professional production of Lyly in a major theatre. He presented his discoveries about the life of John Lyly at the 2018 Shakespeare Association of America conference and the 2019 'Early Modern Inns of Court and the Circulation of Text' conference at Kings College London.

James ShapiroJames Shapiro, Professor of English at Columbia University, is author of the prizewinning 1599: A Year in the Life of William Shakespeare (2005), Contested Will (2010), The Year of Lear (2015), and most recently Shakespeare in a Divided America (2020), selected one of the ten best books of the year by the New York Times. He has been awarded Guggenheim, Cullman, and NEH fellowships, and has been inducted into the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. He serves on the Board of Directors of the Royal Shakespeare Company, and is Shakespeare Scholar in Residence at the Public Theater in New York.

How to attend this event

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