"Thou art a scholar; speak to it."

"hooking up with shakespeare" • August 7–9, 2017

The Wooden O Symposium is a cross-disciplinary conference exploring Medieval through Early Modern Studies, through the text and performance of Shakespeare’s plays. Scholars from all disciplines are encouraged to submit papers that offer insights and new ideas springing from the era of William Shakespeare. His plays are replete with the language, thoughts, and arts of the Renaissance and Western culture and represent an inexhaustible source for creative ideas and research.

The symposium is hosted by Southern Utah University and the Utah Shakespeare Festival. Scholars attending the conference will have the unique opportunity of immersing themselves in research, text, and performance in one of the most beautiful natural settings in the western United States.

Symposium sessions and opening and keynote speakers are open to the public at no charge. Meals and plays require registration and payment of the registration fee.

Download the Symposium Schedule

For further information, call 435-865-8333


Opening Address                                                                                               
Mya Gosling
5–6 p.m. • August 7
Movie Theatre, Sharwan Smith Student Center

Mya Lixian Gosling is the author and artist of Good Tickle Brain, (goodticklebrain.com) the world's foremost and possibly only stick-figure Shakespeare web-comic. Mya thinks that Shakespeare is super fun and wants other people to also think that Shakespeare is super fun. In her past life, Mya worked as a Southeast Asian language cataloger at the University of Michigan Graduate Library

Keynote Address
Heather Wolfe
9–10:15 a.m. • August 8
Sterling Church Auditorium, Sharwan Smith Student Center

Heather Wolfe is curator of manuscripts at the Folger Shakespeare Library and Shakespeare Documented, an online database of images, descriptions, and transcriptions of all known references and allusions to Shakespeare and his works during his lifetime and shortly thereafter. She is also principal investigator for EMMO (Early Modern Manuscripts Online), an IMLS-funded initiative to create a free and searchable database of images and transcriptions of early modern manuscripts created in England or written in English. She has curated numerous Folger exhibitions and has written widely on early modern manuscripts and the intersections between print and manuscript. She has edited The Trevelyon Miscellany of 1608 (2007), The Literary Career and Legacy of Elizabeth Cary (2007), Letterwriting in Renaissance England (2004), and an exhibition catalog co-written with Alan Stewart, and Elizabeth Cary, Lady Falkland: Life and Letters (2001). Her current research interests include early modern filing systems and the social circulation of writing paper. She holds a PhD in Renaissance Literature from the University of Cambridge and an MLIS from University of California, Los Angeles.


Register for the symposium and for the banquet.

Follow the links below to:

  1. Register for the symposium by filling out a simple online form. After you click Submit, the next screen will have a link for payment. You must complete the online payment before your registration is complete.
  2. Included in your registration is one ticket to the banquet. If you would like to bring somebody else, please pay for him or her.

Call for Papers

Submit a paper on Hooking Up with Shakespeare.

The Wooden O Symposium invites panel and paper proposals on any topic related to the text and performance of Shakespeare’s plays. The conference seeks papers/panels that investigate our 2017 theme: Hooking Up with Shakespeare. Topics could range from courtship practices, early-modern marriages, and other pairings and partnerships to collaborations or connections between Shakespeare and other writers. We welcome unique interpretations of this theme. This year’s symposium encourages papers and panels that speak to the Utah Shakespeare Festival’s 2017 summer season: As You Like It, Romeo and Juliet, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, and Shakespeare in Love. Abstracts for consideration for the Wooden O sessions and individual presentations should be sent to usfeducation@bard.org

The deadline for proposals is May 1, 2017. Session chairs and individual presenters will be informed of acceptance no later than May 15. Please include 250-word abstracts or session proposals (including individual abstracts) and the following information:

  • Name of presenter(s)
  • Participant category (faculty, graduate student, undergraduate, or independent scholar)
  • College/university affiliation
  • Mailing address
  • Email address
  • Audio/visual requirements and any other special requests.

Submit the abstract or proposal via post or e-mail to:

Wooden O Symposium
c/o Utah Shakespeare Festival
351 W. Center St. 
Cedar City, UT 84720

Telephone: 435-865-8333
Fax: 435-865-8003

For further information, call 435-865-8333

Journal of the Wooden O

The Journal of the Wooden O is a peer-reviewed, cross-disciplinary, academic publication focusing on all things Shakespeare.

The Journal is published annually by Southern Utah University Press in cooperation with the SUU Center for Shakespeare Studies and the Utah Shakespeare Festival. Editors welcome submissions on all aspects of Shakespeare Studies including text, performance, history, design, adaptation (film, fiction, and visual and performing arts), Elizabethan and Jacobean culture and history, and Shakespeare's contemporaries.

Selected articles are indexed in the MLA International Bibliography. Also, the journal includes the top undergraduate paper selected from the symposium.

Single copies may be purchased for $15 each. Libraries or individuals may subscribe to the journal for $15/year. Prices include shipping and handling.

Top photo: The actor panel at the Wooden O Symposium.