Shakespeare tome visits San Diego



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Home >> Special Collections & University Archives >> New Notable >> Shakespeare tome visits San Diego
William Ball plays the Hamlet at the Old Globe Theatre, 1955
Shakespeare and San Diego's Old Globe Theatre share the spotlight this month as a copy of the First Folio, the first collected edition of Shakespeare's plays published in 1623, visits the downtown San Diego Public Library.
The book, on loan from the Folger Shakespeare Library, will be on display to the public until July 7 as part of a traveling exhibition called First Folio! The Book That Gave Us Shakespeare.
The event also highlights The Globe Theatre in Balboa Park and its role in bringing Shakespeare to San Diego.

The Globe was thrown up just in time for the 1935 California Pacific International Exposition (the theater still a pile of lumber when the first company of actors arrived from Chicago), and delighted crowds with fast-paced, polished versions of Shakespeare's plays. Slated for demolition after the exhibition, the Globe was saved through the efforts of community members.
In 1949 The Globe launched the National Shakespeare Festival, which helped solidify the theater's reputation as a cultural institution. In its first four years the festival was a collaboration between the theater and San Diego State, the productions starring students enrolled in a summer course. Over the years it attracted the talents of stars of film and television, including Christopher Reeve, Kelsey Grammer, Christopher Walken, Marion Ross, Jon Voight and John Glover, to name just a few.

After a twenty year hiatus, during which The Globe continued to produce Shakespeare at a less frequent rate, the festival returned in 2004.

First Folio! includes items from collections housed in Special Collections & University Archives that document the history of the Old Globe and the Shakespeare festival. The event also features programming co-sponsored by the San Diego Public Library and The Globe, and coincides with the summer Shakespeare Festival, to include Macbeth and Love’s Labour’s Lost.
In addition, a photo exhibit of images culled from the Old Globe Theatre Photograph Collection, also housed in Special Collections, is currently on display in the library's 24/7 study area.


John Glover as Mercutio in Romeo and Juliet at the 25th San Diego National Shakespeare Festival, 1974.
Elizabeth Huddle as Goneril in King Lear at the 24th San Diego National Shakespeare Festival, 1973.
Jack Thompson and Ann Deering portraying the characters of Feste and Viola in a production of Twelfth Night at the Old Globe Theatre in 1949.
William Ball portraying Hamlet, with the twilight silhouettes of buildings in Balboa Park seen in the background.
Richard Edelman as Oberon and Robert Baker as Puck in the Old Globe Theatre's A Midsummer Night's Dream directed by Peter Bucknell with Kabuki style costumes designed by Peggy Kellner, 1956.
Lynne Arden as Lady Macbeth in the 1958 Old Globe Theatre production of Macbeth directed by Craig Noel.
Victor Buono in the 1962 Old Globe Theatre production of Othello directed by Allen Fletcher
Ellen Geer as Desdemona in the 1962 Old Globe Theatre production of Othello directed by Allen Fletcher.
Mark Dempsey as Banquo in the 1964 Old Globe Theatre production of Macbeth directed by Duncan Ross.
Anthony Zerbe as Iago and Joseph Maher as Roderigo in the 1967 Old Globe Theatre production of Othello directed by Milton Katselas.
Christopher Walken as Marc Antony and Jonathan McMurtry as Octavius Caesar in the 1969 Old Globe Theatre production of Julius Caesar directed by Richard Easton.
Photograph exhibit currently on display in the library's 24/7 study area.

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