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The Merchant of Venice: Shakespeare in Performance

The Dybbukast, Season 4, Episode 2: The Merchant of Venice: Shakespeare in Performance

Season 4, Episode 2

This illuminated lecture brings together work from Dr. Daniel Pollack-Pelzner, Visiting Scholar at Portland State University and scholar-in-residence at the Portland Shakespeare Project, with readings of excerpts from Shakespeare's Merchant and other related materials. Dr. Pollack-Pelzner takes up the question: “Why perform The Merchant of Venice?" and discusses its production history, scholarship related to the work, and his own personal relationship to the play.

This episode is presented in collaboration with the Shakespeare's First Folio: 1623-2023 Festival at Portland State University and was recorded live as part of the festival on October 26, 2023 during theatre dybbuk's residency in Portland, Oregon.

This is the second in a three episode series connected to concepts that intersect with theatre dybbuk's most recent theatrical work, The Merchant of Venice (Annotated), or In Sooth I Know Not Why I Am So Sad. That production combines text from Shakespeare's The Merchant of Venice with Elizabethan history and news from 2020 to the present. In doing so, it seeks to illuminate how, during times of upheaval, some people may place blame for their anxieties on an “other.”

This episode is supported in part by a grant from the Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs.


Hosted by Aaron Henne

Scholarship and lecture by Daniel Pollack-Pelzner, PhD

Edited by Gregory Scharpen

Story editing for the podcast by Julie A. Lockhart with Aaron Henne

Featuring the voices of Joe Jordan, Adam Lebowitz-Lockard, Julie A. Lockhart, Diana Tanaka, and Inger Tudor, with musical support by Andrew Anderson

Theme music composed by Michael Skloff and produced by Sam K.S.

Transcription by Dylan Southard

"The Merchant of Venice: Shakespeare in Performance" Learning Resources

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Shakespeare's First Folio 1623-2023 logo

Shakespeare’s First Folio: 1623–2023 is a public humanities project in Portland, Oregon, that celebrates the 400th anniversary of the earliest collection of Shakespeare’s plays. From September 2023 to May 2024, the project features a gallery exhibition, a speaker series, a film festival, and performances of Shakespearean drama, opera, and music.


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