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The Old Globe and Pushkin Industries Podcast Where There's A Will: Finding Shakespeare


Launching on November 10, Where There’s A Will examines the ways Shakespeare has jumped off the stage and into surprising corners of American culture.

SAN DIEGO, CA (November 4, 2022)The Old Globe teams up with Pushkin Industries to launch, Where There’s A Will: Finding Shakespeare, an exploration of the many ways Shakespeare has made his way into unexpected corners of American life. Host Barry Edelstein, Erna Finci Viterbi Artistic Director of The Old Globe and one of the leading American authorities on the works of Shakespeare will take listeners on a journey around the country to discover the surprising places Shakespeare pops-up beyond the theater. From a Henry V performance in a maximum security prison to a look at how Shakespeare influences gender identity, Where There’s A Willasks why the Bard’s works permeate our history and culture, and what that says about him and about our society.

Listen to the Where There’s A Will trailer here.

“Shakespeare is at the center of my professional life, and has been for three decades,” says Barry Edelstein. “But my relationship with him goes deeper than just my work. He’s a companion, a friend, and a mentor. It’s a huge delight to discover so many other amazing people who feel that way too, and in so many surprising places. Shakespeare appears in all sorts of unexpected and even crazy corners of our culture, and now I have the chance to ask why. Making this podcast has been a journey of discovery, and has reminded me again and again why this writer is so magical, and why I love him so much. I’m glad that The Old Globe and Pushkin Industries have joined forces to show how the beauty and power of Shakespeare still touch so many people in so many meaningful ways, and I am grateful to everyone who listens.”

With help from featured guests like filmmaker Robert Eggers, No. 2 all-time Jeopardy! champion Amy Schneider, Shakespeare scholar James Shapiro, Pulitzer prize-winner James Ijames, and political speech writer and screenwriter Eli Attie, listeners will join Barry in the places Shakespeare appears off the stage—like a Shakespearean Yom Kippur service, the Oval Office, or the lives of children on the autism spectrum—and discover the depth and meaning of his continued cultural relevance.

The first season of Where There’s A Will premieres on November 10, 2022 wherever listeners access podcasts. It will feature eight documentary-style episodes. For more information visit www.Pushkin.fm. Episodes include:

Episode One – Is Shakespeare American?
New York City, 1849: a riot at a Shakespearean theater leaves dozens dead. But as always with the Bard, there's more here than meets the eye. How did the work of one man writing in Elizabethan England capture the tensions brewing in a newly independent America? And why did people think Shakespeare was important enough to die for?

Episode Two – Becoming King
Host Barry Edelstein takes us into California’s Centinela State Prison for a one-of-a-kind production of Shakespeare’s English history plays performed by incarcerated individuals. What makes Shakespeare a force of transformation and transcendence behind bars?

Episode Three – Four Hamlets
Hamlet is everywhere right now. But this isn't the same play you read in high school English. We meet the minds behind a singing Hamlet, The Northman's Amleth, and Pulitzer prizewinner Fat Ham's Juicy – and ponder what makes this Shakespearean tragedy speak directly to our time.

Episode Four – Shakespeare and Gender
Where men play women, women play men, and your gender is As You Like It. Co-host Em Weinstein leads an exploration of how Shakespeare bent gender on the stage and in his writing, and how that inspired Em—and others—to step into their own truth.

Episode Five – Shakespeare and Presidents
To be, or not to be President? Shakespeare is a longtime ally of America’s Commanders-in-Chief, and for good reason: there's plenty to be found in his work about leadership and how it works. We eavesdrop in the Oval Office to hear how Shakespeare shapes the thinking and feeling of political leaders, and how they draw on him for wisdom and solace. Just don't forget to keep an eye out for Brutus.

Episode Six – Teenaged Shakespeare
Is a Shakespeare-obsessed 15 year-old geeky, or totally cool? We meet a group of teens who’ve immersed themselves in Shakespeare to hear why they believe this writer speaks to them more clearly than any other. And we also meet even younger kids with a very special relationship to the Bard: children on the autism spectrum, who discover ways to express themselves through a writer from 400 years ago.

Episode Seven – Thinking Shakespeare Live
What happens when a regular person has to publicly 'perform' Shakespeare for a wedding or funeral or bat mitzvah? Barry coaches two listeners for their moments in the spotlight, and along the way illuminates how Shakespeare’s language works. Also, we check out Shakespeare in the mouths of baseball announcers, lawyers, lawmakers, K-Pop singers, and a raft of others.

Episode Eight – Faith and Wonder
What happens when William Shakespeare walks into a Yom Kippur service? We take a deep dive into how Shakespeare informs contemporary religious practices and faith traditions, and explore one of Shakespeare’s greatest plays—host Barry Edelstein's favorite—The Winter's Tale. Its focus on the idea of wonder ties all of the Bard's plays, and this season of Where There’s a Will, together.

Barry Edelstein (host and creator) is Erna Finci Viterbi Artistic Director of The Old Globe in San Diego, and is a stage director, producer, author, and educator. Widely recognized as one of the leading American authorities on the works of Shakespeare, he has directed nearly half of the Bard’s plays at the Globe and on major stages in New York City and around the country. Highlights include Othello with Blair Underwood, As You Like It with Gwyneth Paltrow, The Winter’s Tale with David Strathairn, Timon of Athens with Richard Thomas, Richard III with John Turturro, and The Tempest with the Los Angeles Philharmonic on the stage of Walt Disney Concert Hall. He has directed numerous other classics as well as the world premieres of plays and musicals by Steve Martin, Nathan Englander, Michael John LaChiusa, Anna Ziegler, and others. In his decade running The Old Globe he has produced 120 works of theatre by leading American and international artists. Many have gone on to runs on Broadway and around the country. Edelstein transformed the Globe’s community-based, participatory arts engagement work into a nationally renowned initiative. He has taught Shakespearean acting at The Juilliard School, NYU’s Graduate Acting Program, the University of San Diego, and the University of Southern California. His 2007 book Thinking Shakespeare is now the standard text on American Shakespearean acting. He is also the author of Bardisms: Shakespeare for All Occasions.

Em Weinstein is a writer/director for film, theater, and television. Em has written for Amazon’s A League of Their Own and AMC’s upcoming Invitation to a Bonfire. Most recently, Em directed four episodes of season three of The L Word Generation Q. While getting their MFA at Yale School of Drama, Em directed numerous plays such as the first workshop production of Slave Play by Jeremy O. Harris. Em has made two award winning short films that have played at festivals worldwide. Most recently, their film In France Michelle is A Man’s Name won the Grand Jury Prize for Best Narrative Short at Slamdance in February 2021. Em has written and directed work for theater companies around the country and is currently developing film and TV projects with a diverse slate of studios and production companies. Em is transmasculine and uses they/them pronouns.

The Tony Award–winning The Old Globe is one of the country’s leading professional not-for-profit regional theatres. Now in its 88th year, the Globe is San Diego’s flagship performing arts institution, and it serves a vibrant community with theatre as a public good. Under the leadership of Erna Finci Viterbi Artistic Director Barry Edelstein and the Audrey S. Geisel Managing Director Timothy J. Shields, The Old Globe produces a year-round season of 16 productions of classic, contemporary, and new works on its three Balboa Park stages, including its internationally renowned Shakespeare Festival. More than 250,000 people annually attend Globe productions and participate in the theatre’s artistic and arts engagement programs. Its nationally prominent Arts Engagement Department provides an array of participatory programs that make theatre matter to more people in neighborhoods throughout the region. Humanities programs at the Globe and around the city broaden the community’s understanding of theatre art in all its forms. The Globe also boasts a range of new play development programs with professional and community-based writers, as well as the renowned The Old Globe and University of San Diego Shiley Graduate Theatre Program. Numerous world premieres—such as 2014 Tony Award winner for Best Musical A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder, Bright Star, The Full Monty, Dirty Rotten Scoundrels, and Dr. Seuss’s How the Grinch Stole Christmas! —have been developed at The Old Globe and have gone on to highly successful runs on Broadway and at regional theatres across the country.

The Theodor and Audrey Geisel Fund provides leadership support for The Old Globe’s year-round activities.

Pushkin Industries is the audio production company co-founded by Malcolm Gladwell and Jacob Weisberg in 2018. Pushkin has produced numerous podcasts that have broken into the top 10 on Apple’s Top Podcasts chart, including Gladwell’s hugely successful Revisionist History, as well as Against the Rules, The Happiness Lab, Broken Record, Cautionary Tales, The Last Archive, Deep Cover, Lost Hills and Apple’s Best Show of 2021, A Slight Change of Plans. Pushkin’s podcast hosts include Michael Lewis, Jill Lepore, Rick Rubin, Maya Shankar, Tim Harford, Laurie Santos, Khalil Gibran Muhammad, Ben Austen, Dana Goodyear, Jake Halpern, Hallie Rubenhold, Sam Fragoso, Glory Edim, Anita Hill, Jacob Goldstein, Brendan Francis Newnam, Eddie Alterman, Lauren Ober, Helen Molesworth and many more. Pushkin’s audiobooks include the Pulitzer Prize-winning The Netanyahus by Joshua Cohen, Liar’s Poker by Michael Lewis, Fauci by Michael Specter, Heartbreak by Florence Williams, and Malcolm Gladwell’s Miracle and Wonder: Conversations with Paul Simon, The Bomber Mafia and Talking to Strangers. Pushkin is dedicated to producing audio in any format that challenges listeners, encourages their curiosity, and inspires joy. Our work is built on principles of trust: respect, fairness, accuracy, accountability, and honesty. Visit pushkin.fm, where you can purchase our audiobooks and then listen on your podcast player of choice. Follow us @PushkinPods.

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