It's been nearly 400 years since William Shakespeare died in his home of Stratford-on-Avon, but his works have made him an constant in our lives. To commemorate the Bard and his iconic works, the Folger Shakespeare Library in Washington, D.C., has created a traveling exhibition of the first edition of Shakespeare's First Folio from the 17th Century.
The Folio, which was the first bound copy of Shakespeare's works, will make its way across the United States to celebrate the Bard and expose a new generation to his writing. The San Diego Central Library and Old Globe Theater will co-host the piece from June 4 to July 7 on Park Blvd.
The Globe, which is famous for its performances of Shakespearean plays, will also present select performances of his work alongside the exhibit. This co-hosted event will be the only one in the state of California.
The Folio has been copied and distributed to different libraries throughout the world. The Huntington Library in San Martino proudly displays their copy as part of their rare collection, while Shakespeare's Globe in London awaits their own copy for display in July (on loan).
Each site will open the Folio to Hamlet's famous line from the titular character's soliloquy, "To be or not to be." Audience members will also be encouraged to interact with the displays, which will help explain why we have to preserve Shakespeare's work (and writing in general).
The First Folio! The Book That Gave Us Shakespeare exhibition will make stops at the University of Notre Dame (Indiana), Sam Noble Museum (Norman, Oklahoma), and the University of Oregon (Eugene), among others.
Although there are 233 copies of the Folio, the Folger Library only has 82 of them, and none are as revered as the original.
If you don't have time to stop at one of the Folio's tour locations, you might check out America's Shakespeare display and exhibit at the LA Public Library (Nov 10, 2016 - Feb 2017).
If I had a bit more money in my wallet, I'd do both!