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Kelli O'Hara, Alec Baldwin & More Join SHAKESPEARE IN AMERICA Public Forum at the Delacorte, 6/30


The Public Theater announced additional casting today for the free one-night event, PUBLIC FORUM: SHAKESPEARE IN AMERICA, on Monday, June 30 at 8:00 p.m. at the Delacorte Theater in Central Park. Poet Elizabeth Alexander, Alec Baldwin, former U.S. Poet Laureate Billy Collins, Brian Dennehy, Colin Donnell, Michael Friedman, Renée Elise Goldsberry, André Holland, Lincoln scholar Harold Holzer, singer/songwriter Stephen Merritt, Kelli O'Hara, Bryce Pinkham, Caesar Samoyoa and poet Vijay Seshadri join the previously announced Sarah Amengual, Colman Domingo, James Earl Jones, Cynthia Nixon, Annie-B Parson, Steven Pasquale, and Michael Stuhlbarg to celebrate Shakespeare and the newly released Library of America book, Shakespeare in America, edited by Public Theater Shakespeare Scholar in Residence James Shapiro.

Highlights of the evening will include James Earl Jones reading a scene from Othello, marking his return to the Delacorte after a 40-year absence and celebrating the 50th anniversary of his playing Othello on the Delacorte stage; Alec Baldwin reading scenes from Macbeth and an account of Abraham Lincoln's Shakespearean dreams; Kelli O'Hara and Renée Elise Goldsberry singing from The Public's Shakespeare in the Park production of Twelfth Night; and Steven Pasquale singing Tony in the "Tonight" duet from West Side Story.

Free Public Forum tickets will be distributed two per person, at 12:00 p.m. on Monday, June 30 at the Delacorte Theater. Free tickets will also be available via the Virtual Ticketing lottery at on the day of the event. Public Forum Supporter tickets are also available for a tax-deductible donation of $75.

Following the success of last summer's free Public Forum at the Delacorte, the acclaimed "theater-of-ideas" series returns to the alfresco venue to explore how Shakespeare has challenged and inspired the American people, from poets to presidents. This free one-night-only event will feature scenes from Shakespeare's greatest works performed by some of America's greatest actors, songs from musicals inspired by the Bard, as well as excerpts from the newly released Library of America book, Shakespeare in America, edited by Public Theater Shakespeare Scholar in Residence James Shapiro, which includes speeches, interviews, and other writings about Shakespeare's influence on American culture.

"Telling the story of Shakespeare in America means telling the story of America," said Public Forum Director Jeremy McCarter. "It's a thrill to have so many of the country's greatest actors and leading cultural figures show us how Americans have been affected by Shakespeare - and how we have made him our own."

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