Tag Archives: Woodstock

Whoever says Shakespeare in all wet? “What Blest Genius?” does . . . with good reason!

Remember the failed “luxury music festival”  that was Fyre Fest? Or the messy (but ultimately rewarding) planning behind Woodstock? The logistics behind major festivals and events are always tricky and sometimes can outright fail. Even many centures. Many.

In Andrew McConnell Stott’s What Blest Genius? The Jubilee That Made Shakespeare (W. W. Norton & Company, $26.95), the focus is on Shakespeare’s Jubilee: the event that established William Shakespeare as the greatest writer of all time in September 1769.

It was also a ridiculous, rain-soaked disaster. Three thousand people descended on Stratford-upon-Avon to celebrate the artistic legacy of the town’s most famous son. Attendees included the rich and powerful, the fashionable and the curious, eligible ladies and fortune hunters, and a horde of journalists and profiteers. For three days, they paraded through garlanded streets, listened to songs and oratorios, and enjoyed masked balls. It was a unique cultural moment―a coronation elevating Shakespeare to the throne of genius.

The poorly planned Jubilee imposed an army of Londoners on a backwater hamlet peopled by hostile and superstitious locals, unable and unwilling to meet their demands. Rain fell in sheets, flooding tents and dampening fireworks, and threatening to wash the whole town away. Told from the dual perspectives of David Garrick, who masterminded the Jubilee, and James Boswell, who attended it, What Blest Genius? is rich with humor, gossip and theatrical intrigue.

Lucy will have you laughing and on the ball . . . but not that Lucy

Charlie Brown knows the truth: “Happiness is anyone and anything that’s loved by you.”

And though the he thinks he’s not so well liked, people love him. Even Lucy. Even if he doesn’t have a nickel.

Lovable Lucy takes the spotlight in Lucy: Speak Out! Andrews McMeel, $9.99), the latest collection of Peanuts comics for kids.
In this de(lightful collection of classic Peanuts comics for younger readers, Lucy rallies her friends to speak out for equal rights for women.
Between social causes and dropping fly balls in the outfield, Lucy decides to write a biography of Beethoven, much to Schroeder’s dismay.
Meanwhile, life in the Peanuts gang is as hilarious as always: Woodstock takes up farming, Peppermint Patty struggles to make the grade, and Charlie Brown’s rotten luck lands him in the hospital. You won’t want to miss this latest edition of outstanding Peanuts fun.