ALA announces unique opportunity to host Shakespeare’s 1623 ‘First Folio’ in traveling exhibition

For Immediate Release
Mon, 06/09/2014

Contact:

Sarah Ostman
Communications Manager
ALA Public Programs Office (PPO)
312-280-5061
sostman@ala.org

CHICAGO — The American Library Association (ALA) Public Programs Office, in collaboration with the Folger Shakespeare Library and Cincinnati Museum Center (CMC), invites applications for the traveling exhibition Shakespeare and His First Folio.

The exhibition — part of the international events planned for 2016 in observance of the 400th anniversary of William Shakespeare’s death — will bring the 1623 original edition of the playwright’s first published collection to 53 sites: one site in all 50 United States, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Each location will host the exhibition for four weeks.

The opportunity is open to public, academic and special libraries, small museums, historical societies and other cultural venues. Online applications must be submitted to ALA by Sept. 5, 2014.

Shakespeare and His First Folio is made possible in part by a major grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities: Exploring the human endeavor.

Published just seven years after his death, Mr. William Shakespeares Comedies, Histories, & Tragedies — now known as the “First Folio” — saved for posterity 18 of Shakespeare’s 38 plays, including "The Tempest," "Macbeth," "Twelfth Night" and "As You Like It." Multiple copies of this original edition, each accompanied by six interpretive panels, will tour the nation as the exhibition Shakespeare and His First Folio, providing hundreds of thousands of visitors with a rare opportunity to view this important book in their own community.

Each host institution must have a suitable space in which to display the First Folio and exhibition and must meet environmental and security requirements. Selected sites will be asked to plan several related programs, including an opening event and programs for schoolteachers and families. The tour will launch in January 2016 and continue through the calendar year.

ALA’s Public Programs Office provides leadership, resources, training and networking opportunities that help thousands of librarians nationwide develop and host cultural programs for adult, young adult and family audiences. The mission of the ALA Public Programs Office is to promote cultural programming as an essential part of library service in all types of libraries. Projects include book and film discussion series, literary and cultural programs featuring authors and artists, professional development opportunities and traveling exhibitions. School, public, academic and special libraries nationwide benefit from the office’s programming initiatives.

Folger Shakespeare Library is a world-renowned center for scholarship, learning, culture and the arts. It is home to the world's largest Shakespeare collection and a primary repository for rare materials from the early modern period (1500–1750). The Folger is an internationally recognized research library offering advanced scholarly programs in the humanities; an innovator in the preservation of rare materials; a national leader in how Shakespeare is taught in grades K–12; and an award-winning producer of cultural and arts programs — theater, music, poetry, exhibits, lectures and family programs. A gift to the American people from industrialist Henry Clay Folger, the Folger Shakespeare Library – located one block east of the U.S. Capitol – opened in 1932. Learn more at www.folger.edu.

Cincinnati Museum Center at Union Terminalwhich is designing and fabricating the exhibitry for Shakespeare and His First Folio and managing the folios’ travels throughout the tour is a nationally recognized institution as well as national historic landmark. Dedicated to sparking community dialogue, insight and inspiration, Museum Center was awarded the 2009 National Medal for Museum and Library Service. Organizations within Cincinnati Museum Center include the Cincinnati History Museum, Duke Energy Children's Museum, the Museum of Natural History & Science, the Robert D. Lindner Family OMNIMAX Theater and the Cincinnati Historical Society Library. Learn more at www.cincymuseum.org.

Created in 1965 as an independent federal agency, the National Endowment for the Humanities supports research and learning in history, literature, philosophy and other areas of the humanities by funding selected, peer-reviewed proposals from around the nation. Additional information about the National Endowment for the Humanities and its grant programs is available at www.neh.gov.