Grateful for good friends, new friends, and Shakespeare enthusiasts!

Elizabeth Thornton, in red, greets ISC guests to her home. (Photo by Lynn Roylance)

Elizabeth Thornton, in red, greets ISC guests to her home. (Photo by Lynn Roylance)

Elizabeth Thornton’s home on Canyon Road and Delgado was especially radiant last Friday night. Each beautiful room in the historic adobe exuded a sparkle and warmth enhanced by the enthusiastic guests who had come to celebrate the launch of the International Shakespeare Center.

The Upstart Crows of Santa Fe singing Elizabethan tavern songs to welcome guests. (Photo by Lynn Roylance)

The Upstart Crows of Santa Fe singing Elizabethan tavern songs to welcome guests. (Photo by Lynn Roylance)

In the front courtyard, five young actors from Upstart Crows of Santa Fe sang songs from Shakespeare’s plays.

Enjoying Elizabethan sweets! (Photo by Lynn Roylance)

Enjoying Elizabethan sweets! (Photo by Lynn Roylance)

Inside, each room held a different delight: the exquisite Elizabethan savory and sweet treats created by Suzanne Cross and her superb cooks, silent auction items - from fine art to fine food, to Shakespearean booklets, reader’s editions, and the excitement of performances.

Edie Murphy dishing out the delicacies in the kitchen. (Photo by Lynn Roylance)

Edie Murphy dishing out the delicacies in the kitchen. (Photo by Lynn Roylance)

Rhea Maxwell's organizational skills were in full force deploying our amazing volunteers throughout the preparation, execution, and clean up.

Ariana Karp performing the "Willow" scene from Twelfth Night. (Photo by Lynn Roylance)

Ariana Karp performing the "Willow" scene from Twelfth Night. (Photo by Lynn Roylance)

Ariana Karp of the award-winning Ducdame Ensemble in New York flew in to share her passion for Shakespeare. She and ISC board member Anna Farkas presented a scene from Twelfth Night. More young Crows gave the packed dining room a heartfelt taste of A Midsummer Night’s Dream. One of the highlights of the event was Robert Benedetti’s closing speech as Sir John Falstaff from Henry IV, Part 1 to a riveted crowd. Beni as he is known to his friends, is the newest member of our Advisory Board joining Mark Rylance. We are honored by his willingness to join us.  His extraordinary career highlights can be found here

Guests enjoying good conversation and good food! (Photo by Lynn Roylance)

Guests enjoying good conversation and good food! (Photo by Lynn Roylance)

The event was a success on many levels - a brilliant party, a chance to share all that the ISC has been doing, an introduction to our ongoing activities and an opportunity to support the upcoming visits of London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art teachers who will present three workshops in February for the First Folio celebration.  The celebration is coincident with The New Mexico Museum of Art's exhibit of First Folio! The Book that Gave Us Shakespeare supported by the National Endowment of the Humanities and the Folger Shakespeare Library in Washington, DC.  Fun fact: Our hostess, Elizabeth Thornton is a descendant of the Folgers!

Guests renewing and meeting new friends. (Photo by Lynn Roylance)

Guests renewing and meeting new friends. (Photo by Lynn Roylance)

As guests stepped back into the November darkness at the end of the evening, it seemed to us that they took the glow and warmth with them - a little touch of Shakespeare in the night. We are so grateful for the support!