Worldwide icon-chevron-right Europe icon-chevron-right United Kingdom icon-chevron-right England icon-chevron-right London icon-chevron-right A 48-hour Shakespeare readathon is happening this weekend to help save the Globe theatre
Shakespeare’s Globe theatre
Photograph: cowardlion / Shutterstock

A 48-hour Shakespeare readathon is happening this weekend to help save the Globe theatre

Donations will help the Globe weather its biggest threat since it opened

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The current crisis is wreaking all sorts of havoc on London’s arts and cultural industries. One of the major institutions to have been hit hard by the pandemic is Shakespeare’s Globe, which says it’s facing its biggest threat since it opened in 1997. 

In order to raise some much-needed funds for the Thamesside theatre, a bunch of its former students are holding a 48-hour readathon of some of The Bard’s best-loved works. 

Some former Shakespeare studies MA students, who were taught at the theatre, have created Read for the Globe, a whole bank holiday weekend of continuous readings of Shakespeare plays from 7pm on Saturday May 23 all the way through to 7pm on Monday May 25. 

The group put out an open call for readers who will be getting into good voice to recite 16 of Shakespeare’s best-known plays including ‘As You Like It’, ‘Macbeth’, ‘Hamlet’, ‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream’, ‘Romeo and Juliet’ and ‘The Tempest’. Spare a thought for those trying to get through ‘Titus Andronicus’ at two o’clock in the morning. 

Viewers can tune in to the readings at any time on YouTube and will be asked to donate what they can to the theatre. 

Read for the Globe said: ‘The Globe is an unsubsidised space that relies mostly on audiences for its income – [and] it’s in dire straits due to the Covid-19 pandemic. We are a group of friends who met on the Globe’s MA course, who love the theatre [and] want to help raise awareness [and] encourage donations.’

If you’re looking forward to queuing for £5 standing tickets again, tune in and pledge what you can. 

Find the full line-up of plays being read out across the weekend here. Watch the readings on Read for the Globe’s YouTube channel. 

Can’t get enough of the Globe? The theatre is streaming a Shakespeare play for free every fortnight.

Read more on when London’s theatres could reopen

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