Skip to Top NavigationSkip to ContentSkip to Footer

Theater Students Support Annual Shakespeare's Birthday Celebration Tuesday, April 24

Ferris State UniversityLingering wintry weather should be an afterthought as Ferris State University students collaborate, Tuesday, April 24, to recognize the birthday of legendary playwright William Shakespeare with a late-morning presentation on the North Quad near the University Center.

Assistant Professor of English, Literature and World Languages Melissa Smith said there are contingent plans to use a portion of the University Center Ballroom, from 11 a.m. to 12 p.m., if rainy conditions are present during the celebration.

“The Humanities department joins with our department to sponsor the event,” Smith said. “There will be a series of scenes from Romeo and Juliet performed this year with a majority of the participants in the presentation coming from Ferris’ Theater program.”

Smith said the annual production is student-driven, with high hopes that portraying scenes from the tragic love story will interest students who may have read the play as high schoolers or an earlier point in their education.

“We sought the support of Theater Professor Katherine LaPietra since our performers wanted to include a sword fight as part of their presentation,” Smith said. “It is important that the fight be well choreographed, so that it is done safely. Our cast believes that bit of action, along with our use of period costumes will help to make for an entertaining performance.”

Smith said the event will include cupcakes for the audience as part of the traditional fare for the celebration. A number of prizes will be awarded following the performances.

Shakespeare’s actual birth date is a point of debate for historians, but his date of baptism has been specified as April 26, 1564. The tradition, in that time, was to hold the baptismal three days after the child’s birth.

Anyone with a disability wishing to attend the celebration can contact assistant professor of English, Literature and World Languages Heather Pavletic by email or by calling (231) 591-3033 at least 72 hours prior to the event.


PHOTO CAPTION: The birthday of legendary playwright William Shakespeare will be celebrated on Tuesday, April 24 at Ferris State University. An open-air presentation of scenes from Romeo and Juliet will take place from 11 a.m. to 12 p.m. in the North Quad, near the University Center.