Click to search the Andrew Heiskell Braille and Talking Book Library Skip Navigation

The Public Theater Mobile Unit Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night, directed by Saheem Ali


The Public Theater Mobile Unit Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night

Directed by Saheem Ali

From schools to homeless shelters, prisons to community centers, the Public Theater’s Mobile Unit brings Shakespeare to the people, and the people to Shakespeare.  This season, the Mobile Unit celebrates 60 years of igniting dialogue and fostering new connections with a vibrant new production of the gender-bending, heart-mending comedy, Twelfth Night.

When a young shipwrecked immigrant named Viola takes a chance on the “wet foot, dry foot” policy of the mid-nineties and washes up amidst the shore of glitzy Illyria, Florida, she finds herself a stranger in a fabulously strange new land. Thinking her twin brother has drowned, Viola throws herself into a new gig as assistant to Orsino, a wealthy Floridian with a serious case of love sickness for a wealthy lady, Olivia. Having disguised herself as a boy to become Orsino’s right hand man, Viola (now Cesario) is tasked with delivering his adoring valentines. But as Viola woos in her boss’s name, she falls head over spiky heels for the man himself, while Olivia turns her affections to the intriguing young messenger boy, Cesario (also Viola).

Set to the rhythms of house, Cuban and nineties beats, Saheem Ali directs this colorful comedy about the power of new people and new experiences that throw the world into beautiful disarray, and open hearts and minds to the possibility of love. 


The Public’s Mobile Unit is a reinvention of Joseph Papp’s Mobile Shakespeare, which he began in 1957, evolving into the New York Shakespeare Festival and ultimately becoming The Public Theater. Joseph Papp, whose papers reside at The Library for the Performing Arts, had a simple idea—that Shakespeare belongs to everyone—and this idea remains at the heart of The Public Theater’s work to this day. The Library hosts this special presentation of Twelfth Night by the Mobile Unit, along with a pop-up exhibition of early Mobile Shakespeare artifacts from Joseph Papp papers.

Reserve your general admission seat HERE starting  (If you need assistance with online reservations, please visit the welcome desk at the Library for the Performing Arts' Lincoln Center Plaza entrance, where volunteers will make a reservation for you, even if you do not use email. For free events, The Library generally overbooks to ensure a full house. All registered seats are released 15 minutes before start time, so we recommend that you arrive early.)
This event takes place in the Library for the Performing Arts' Cafe, on the first floor, Lincoln Center plaza level.  Enter via the Cafe entrance by ascending the stairs at the corner of Amsterdam Ave. and West 65th St.  Mobility impaired people may enter via 111 Amsterdam Ave. 

Twelfth Night


Chat with a librarian now

Keep Up With NYPL Events

Subscribe to our newsletters:

NYPL Programs

NYPL Family Programs

Programs for educators:

Teaching & Learning