All the world’s a stage at Lancaster

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Lancaster University will be playing host to the tenth annual British Shakespeare Association Conference from February 24th until the 26th this term.

The university will welcome academics, artists, musicians and publishers from across the globe to celebrate the many works of the English playwright.

Alison Findlay, Professor of Renaissance Drama at Lancaster, and her colleagues in the English Department, Liz Oakley-Brown, Hilary Hinds and Eleanor Rycroft, along with a great team of student helpers have been working hard to ensure that the convention is a success.

Professor Findlay told SCAN: “The experience has been exhausting but exhilarating, I find Shakespearean drama fascinating and therefore I’m honoured that Lancaster has been chosen to hold such a prestigious conference.”

This years’ event, entitled “Shakespeare Inside-out: Depth/Surface/Meaning,” seeks to explore the draw of literature through objects, performance space and emotion, altering our understanding of plays and poetry by focusing on a variety of works by William Shakespeare.

“The conference programme is very exciting, including lectures by prominent speakers, Professor Jean E. Howard (Columbia University) and Cicely Berry (Member of the Royal Shakespeare Company) among others” explained Findlay. “Workshops and seminars will also take place alongside performances of ‘Much Ado About Nothing’ staged at Lancaster Castle and a performance of ‘Love Labour’s Lost’ at the Duke’s theatre in Lancaster.”

Due to the prominent profile of the conference, a number of Shakespearian events, in association with the Duke’s theatre, will also be taking place in the local area. This includes an exhibition of paintings, inspired by ‘The Tempest’, by Alan O’ Cain, an ex-graduate of the History department, allowing everyone in Lancaster to have a taste of Shakespeare.

Findlay highlighted the significance of the conference to the University community.

“The conference is a wonderful opportunity to showcase the talents of staff and students at Lancaster University. Both Postgraduate and Undergraduate students, speaking or helping at the event, will have the chance to discuss their own work and aspirations with experts in the field of Shakespeare studies” she said.

Findlay also hopes that Lancaster staff and students will also be able to attend the opening and closing plenary lectures held on campus by academics Andrew Gurr and Jean Howard. She urges anyone that wishes to attend these lectures to e-mail her at: a.g.findlay@lancaster.ac.uk.

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