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George Eliot, Judaism, and Mary Anne Evans, Bicentennial

In this lecture, eminent Eliot scholar and internationally renowned literary critic William Baker takes audiences on a multimedia celebration of Jewish author George Eliot’s life and times. Of special note will be the 200th anniversary of her epic novel Middlemarch.

About the speaker:
William Baker is Emeritus Professor of English and University Libraries at Northern Illinois University. He has authored more than 30 books, including numerous studies of George Eliot and nineteenth-century British literature.

MARGARET ATWOOD – Live in theatres

ON SALE MAY 10

The Testaments, Margaret Atwood’s highly anticipated sequel to The Handmaid’s Tale, is revealed. The momentous literary event will be celebrated with an exclusive live cinema broadcast, as Fane Productions present an evening with the Canadian novelist, poet, literary critic and inventor.

The publication of Atwood’s The Handmaid’s Tale in 1985 and the current, Emmy Award-winning television series have created a cultural phenomenon, as handmaids have become a symbol of women’s rights and a protest against misogyny and oppression. Live from the London stage, Atwood will be interviewed by broadcaster and author Samira Ahmed in a conversation spanning the length of Atwood’s remarkable career, her diverse range of works, and why she has returned to her seminal handmaid story, 34 years later.

‘Dear Readers: Everything you’ve ever asked me about Gilead and its inner workings is the inspiration for this book. Well, almost everything! The other inspiration is the world we’ve been living in.’

With exclusive readings from the new book by special guests, this will be an unmissable and intimate event with Atwood, spotlighting her signature insight, humour and intellect.

Reduced Shakespeare Company’s All the Great Books (abridged)

Little Dickens. Short Longfellow. Reduced Proust… All the Great Books. As anyone named Cliff will tell you, Less is More. The Literary Canon explodes as the bad boys of abridgement again unleash comic outrage on an unsuspecting public. America’s best loved comedy troupe takes you on a 98 minute roller- coaster ride through its compact compendium of 89 of the world’s great books in All The Great Books (abridged). It’s 1.1 books per minute (on average). Confused by Confucius? Thrown by Thoreau? Wish Swift was faster? Aiming for an ace of Tennyson? Then hop aboard and buckle up as the three cultural guerrillas of the Reduced Shakespeare Company zip through everything you should have read in school but probably didn’t. It’s a blast of bibliography. You’ve seen their PBS special. You’ve heard them on National Public Radio. They are officially London’s longest-running comedy troupe, and have broken box-office records at the Kennedy Center, Seattle Repertory Theatre, and the Pittsburgh Public Theatre. What are you waiting for? Tempus fugit! Reductio ad absurdum.

In the spirit of Shakespeare himself, RSC shows contain some occasional bawdy language and mild innuendo. All children (and parents) are different, so we’ve chosen to rate our shows PG- 13: Pretty Good If You’re Thirteen.

What the Critics Say…

“Inspired lunatics! Funny, funny show… Brilliant!”

~ The Charlotte Observer

“Raucously funny! Inspired, crazed ridiculousness!” ~ The Buffalo News

“Literature’s greatest hits condensed into a 90-minute roller-coaster ride of hilarity.” ~ The Atlanta Journal Constitution

“Verbally dexterous and physically agile. The show darts from satire to silliness to sophisticated irreverence.” ~ The Boston Globe

“…come see how three accomplished performers can turn your literary ignorance into a polished evening’s entertainment.” ~ The Seattle Times

“Intertextuality can rarely have felt so frantic or so funny.” ~ The Scotsman, Edinburgh

Website: www.reducedshakespeare.com