Hark! Bard b-day celebrations honor Shakespeare's 450th


We don't want you to have to get one of those "Sorry I missed your birthday" cards, so we're letting you know in plenty of time that William Shakespeare, widely regarded as the the world’s pre-eminent dramatist, has a big birthday on Wednesday. He's turning 450.

And forsooth if there aren't numerous celebrations of the day planned.

Where for art they? The University of Minnesota's Discover blog explained that part of campus will be turned into a stage in honor of the world’s most famous playwright. A free outdoor celebration, to be held at Murphy Hall from 4-6 p.m., will include the live music, food and cake that visitors might expect at any birthday party. Because it's the Will Shakespeare Birthday Bash, it will also include performances, sonnets and sword fights. An open mic will let audience members get into the act and do some recitin' or share high school tales about Shakespeare in the classroom.

“We’ll try to make it a little bit like it was in Shakespeare’s day, with strolling refreshments and lots of no doubt revelry and hilarity,” Terri Sutton, an English Department organizer, told the Star Tribune.

The Northfield News added that Carleton College is tossing a bard birthday party Wednesday from 4-6 p.m. in the Weitz Center for Creativity on the campus in Northfield. The celebration will feature performances, displays, and refreshments. It's free.

In Winona, the company from the Great River Shakespeare Festival will promote their upcoming season at Merchants Bank. The Winona Daily News says public is invited for for birthday cake from noon to 2 p.m.

The Pioneer Press sponsored a Shakespeare 450th Birthday 45-second Film Festival Contest in honor of the day, noting, "As Shakespeare himself put it, brevity is the soul of wit and if it were done when 'tis done, then 'twere well it were done quickly."

Be watching for the results of the mini-films, required to incorporate some sort of Shakespearean theme.

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