In the ongoing spirit of us giving back to our communities, Penguin Random House has been a longtime supporter of Shakespeare in the Park, one of the cornerstones of the Public Theater’s mission to bring performing arts to the people of New York City. Since 1962, over five million people have experienced more than 150 free productions of Shakespeare and other classical works and musicals. As New Yorkers waited in line this summer for tickets to watch free performances of Twelfth Night at the Delacorte Theatre in NYC’s Central Park, our Penguin Random House employee volunteers cheerfully distributed free books on three different August afternoons. Penguin Random House gift bags and Hogarth Shakespeare totes were filled with such titles as Judy Blundell’s THE HIGH SEASON , Christina Dalcher’s VOX (distributed in advance of the book’s 8/21 pub date), Shakespeare’s TWELFTH NIGHT, Margaret Atwood’s HAG-SEED, Edward St. Aubyn’s DUNBAR and Jo Nesbø’s MACBETH.
Volunteers had the opportunity to talk with Shakespeare fans from all walks of life, including an educator from New Jersey who shared that she would assign an acting session from VOX for her class. A librarian from Yonkers also shared her excitement about receiving a second copy of VOX (she had already pre- ordered one). Another group of women announced that they would start a book club with all the books they received.
Volunteer Matt, Academic and Library Marketing Assistant, Penguin Young Readers, said, “While the perks of a morning in the park and two free tickets to see Shakespeare can’t be understated, what really made this a pleasure was seeing the enthusiastic responses to the books we handed out, as well as the love and recognition of Penguin Random House as an institution.”
Penguin Random House imprints continue to publish the full range of Shakespeare’s plays, as well as books inspired by of The Bard’s works, such as SHAKESPEARE BASICS FOR GROWN-UPS by B. Caotes and E. Foley, and THE GAP OF TIME by Jeanette Winterson, a re-telling of Shakespeare’s play The Winter’s Tale and part of the Hogarth Shakespeare series, an international Penguin Random House publishing initiative.
Penguin Random House volunteers in action: