The New Criterion is approving of a new National Endowment for the Arts project called “Shakespeare in American Communities.” This ambitious fourteen-month program —supported by the Sallie Mae Fund and Arts Midwest in conjunction with the NEA—will send six theater companies across the country to perform Othello, Romeo and Juliet, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, and Richard III. In addition, the NEA is collaborating with the Department of Defense to bring a tour of Macbeth to military bases in the United States. (“If it were done when ’tis done, then ’twere well / It were done quickly”: a useful bit of advice for a soldier.) It looks good, better than funding so-called art by Robert Mapplethorpe. Here is the NEA site on the Shakespeare project.