COLA celebrating Shakespeare with Eras Tour-themed festival

Apr 23, 2024 | Liberal Arts

The College of Liberal Arts is once again hosting the annual Shakespeare Festival on Wednesday, April 24, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. in the George T. Madison courtyard. As part of the COLA’s week-long “Hootenanny” celebration festivities, this year’s Shakespeare Festival theme is currently a familiar one in the pop culture pantheon: The Eras Tour.

The event is supported by Sigma Tau Delta International English Honor Society and Louisiana Tech’s School of Literature and Language.

Our annual Shakespeare Festival is one of the longstanding cultural highlights in the College of Liberal Arts,” said Dean Karl Puljak. “While led by the faculty and students of the School of Literature and Language, the festival includes the contributions of musicians, actors, and many others to make this event both enlightening and fun. Our GTM Courtyard becomes the perfect backdrop for a day to celebrate ‘The Bard.’”

Shakespeare’s well-rounded nature as a creator of timeless works makes him the perfect candidate for such a multifaceted festival.

“Shakespeare is an interesting, unique historical figure,” said Assistant Professor of English and faculty sponsor of Sigma Tau Delta Benjamin Bergholtz. “He was a playwright, so you have theater. His plays are among the greatest works of literature of all time, so you have English. He’s studied all over the world, so there’s foreign languages. His works often include music, and there is always music at the event.”

Taylor Swift’s Eras Tour was chosen as the theme not just for its popularity but for its relevancy. Swift’s music often references Shakespeare and Shakespearean themes, and, as an icon in her own right, her work helped inspire some of the activities of the event.

A dueling theater experience, Taylor Swift/Shakespeare trivia, a pop-up puppet show, a keynote speaker, and more are set for the run of show on Wednesday. Every 30 to 45 minutes throughout the event, a new activity starts with opportunities to win prizes.

“Come hang out there, visit with your friends, eat popcorn, and watch us be silly,” Bergholtz encouraged.

Whether Swifties or Bardolators, all students, faculty, and staff from all disciplines are welcome to enjoy the fun at the Shakespeare Festival.

This story was written by communication student Katelyn Wiley.