William Shakespeare would have been 451 this year, which is cause enough for celebration. We wouldn’t be who we are without him, so his birthday is an occasion we dearly love! We’ll be celebrating at the Fairmont Pacific Rim at Bill’s Birthday Breakfast, kicking off the season with Bard on the Beach supporters. Stage your own celebration with some of our favourite ways to mark Shakespeare’s birthday.

  1. Put on your best period costume for the day: Everything’s more fun when you do it in costume. We’re Christopher Gaze in The Comedy of Errors, 2009talking flouncy shirts, corsets, high collars and ornate gowns for the upper class among you. Our Artistic Director, Christopher Gaze, recommends the Queen Elizabeth look for day or night. 
  2. Profess your love from a balcony: Romeo and Juliet doesn’t exactly end well for the pair of lovers, but it wasn’t all bad. Channel your inner Juliet and share your feelings with the one you love waiting down below. In the absence of a balcony, try staircases, escalators or your desk at the office – they’ll work just as well.
  3. Write a sonnet: Read some of Shakespeare’s sonnets for inspiration, then get writing. It’s the perfect excuse to put your thoughts down on paper, and you can always borrow a few lines from Shakespeare to get started. If you can’t profess your love from a balcony, then a sonnet will do just fine. Go the more traditional route with pen and paper – or quill and parchment – no emailing allowed. Step into Shakespeare’s world for the day.
  4. Share your best #ShakespeareSelfie: Tweet, Facebook or Instagram your best Shakespeare-inspired photo. Get creative with costumes, take a photo of yourself reading one of his plays or make a Shakespeare-inspired prop. Extra points if you manage to pose with a skull à la Hamlet.
  5. Add pancakes to the menu: If you look a little closer, you’ll notice a mention of pancakes in Shakespeare’s As You Like It and All’s Well That Ends Well. We can’t say whether he was truly a pancake fan, or if it is solely tied to Shrove Tuesday tradition, but we’ll take any excuse to add pancakes to our diet for the day.
  6. Speak Shakespearean: Brush up on your thees and thous, and try out your best Shakespearean on colleagues and friends for the day. If you need a bit of inspiration, check out our blog post from Bic Pentameter here.

How will you be celebrating William Shakespeare’s birthday? Let us know in the comments below and don’t forget to tag @bardonthebeach in your #ShakespeareSelfie!