A scene from Broadway's Matilda, where free copies of Shakespeare's sonnets will be placed on the seats on April 23.
A scene from Broadway's Matilda, where free copies of Shakespeare's sonnets will be placed on the seats on April 23.
(© Joan Marcus)

The Broadway League plans to partner with World Book Night U.S, a nonprofit campaign that gives printed books to light readers and nonreaders, to provide free copies of Shakespeare's sonnets in celebration of the Bard's 450th birthday.

Copies of the Dover edition of the sonnets will be placed on theater seats during the April 23 matinee and/or evening performances of Rodgers + Hammerstein's Cinderella, Matilda The Musical, Newsies, and The Lion King. Audience members will be encouraged to give their book to someone who may not be a regular reader.

In addition, World Book Night U.S. will provide free copies of Shakespeare's sonnets to the Broadway League for use at national Family First Nights and Kids' Night on Broadway programs throughout the country. They will also be distributed to students participating in the Broadway League's high school internship program. These events will occur throughout the year.

Family First Nights provides specially priced theater tickets for families who may not otherwise be able to attend Broadway and Touring Broadway shows. Kids' Night on Broadway, a national audience development program, allows kids ages 6 to 18 to see Broadway shows for free when accompanied by a full-paying adult.

For tickets to Cinderella, click here.

For tickets to Matilda The Musical, click here.

For tickets to Newsies, click here.

For tickets to The Lion King, click here.