Wednesday 23rd July 6:30pm

MACBETH FOR FACEBOOKBard-en-Seine: Celebrating 450 Years of Shakespeare

Shakespeare means something to everyone, and the parameters for appreciating his work expand as we move through our lives. On the 450th anniversary of Shakespeare’s birth, we thought it made sense—here in the old heart of Paris—to bring the work of the bard to as many people as possible, for free, in the open-air.

The centrepiece of our five-day Shakespearean extravaganza is a site-specific production of Macbeth, one the most devastating and profound tragedies ever written, first performed in 1611. This year, to honour the centenary of the First World War, our production will investigate a war where teenage soldiers pervade and men in power decide what is worth dying for. This interpretation will challenge the play’s basic assumptions—for example, the identity of the true dictator—and conjure a cold and calculating world where brutal uprisings are merely a political game.

To complement our production in the park, we’re also hosting four Shakespearean events, ranging from a summer’s evening of sonnet reading to a lecture from Stanley Wells, one of the world’s most acclaimed Shakespeare writers.

Bard-en-Seine: The Full Schedule

Wednesday 23rd July
18h30: Macbeth (Square René Viviani)

Thursday 24th July

16h30: Alan Riding (author of the Essential Shakespeare Handbook) on Shakespeare: The Person & The Playwright

17h30: Jazz interlude

18h30: Macbeth (Square René Viviani)

Friday 25th July

16h30: Summertime Shakespearean Sonnets, with Lola Peploe

17h30: Jazz interlude

18h30: Macbeth (Square René Viviani)

Saturday 26th July

16h30: Stanley Wells on Shakespeare, Sex & Love

17h30: Jazz interlude

18h30: Macbeth (Square René Viviani)

Sunday 27th July

16h30: The Merry Wanderer of the Night (feat. Alice Selwyn-Brace, Zorro Maplestone, Haxie Meyers-Belkin, Connor Mew, Milly Unwin, Will Kitson and Emma Phillips)

17h30: Jazz interlude

18h30: Macbeth (Square René Viviani)

Thursday 31st July 6:00pm

midsummerThe Bard-en-Seine Readings

Throughout 2014, in honour of the 450th anniversary of Shakespeare’s birth, we’re hosting the Bard-en-Seine Readings. The goal is simple: to revisit and celebrate some of Shakespeare’s most loved plays. So, once a month, we will be hosting informal read-throughs in the library, which will be recorded and sent out as podcasts in this very newsletter.

For July, the play will be A Midsummer Night’s Dream and the reading will take place on Thursday 31st at 6pm, in the library.

If you’d like to take part, please email Milly Unwin at, and tell her whether you’d prefer a larger or a smaller role. Parts will be allocated on a first-come first-served basis, and we’ll let you know a week in advance of the reading whether you have a role. No preparation necessary, and we’ll provide the scripts. Please note that, due to space restrictions, the Bard-en-Seine Readings will only be open to those taking part.

The allocated plays for each remaining month of 2014 are as follows:

August – Othello

September – The Merchant of Venice

October – Hamlet

November – Twelfth Night

December – Anthony and Cleopatra

Please check the newsletter and website each month for dates and times, and details of how to apply.