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Shakespeare’s Globe, 2022
Photo by John Wildgoose

The Globe has just announced its 2022 summer season, and it’s looking Bardtastic

‘Much Ado’, ‘Lear’, a rare ‘Henry VIII’… and a new play about Joan of Arc

Andrzej Lukowski
Written by
Andrzej Lukowski

The Globe has announced its 2022 summer season, and guess what? There’s quite a lot of Shakespeare involved!!

Hilarious joking aside, the Globe’s summer season is in fact the least expected in a while as the Bankside icon has finally managed to clear the baggage of its cancelled 2020 season. The only previously announced bit of programming is what’s probably the season’s juiciest show in terms of names, as the great Kathryn Hunter (picturdd) – riding high off her turn as the Weird Sisters in Denzel Washington ‘Macbeth’ – takes on the eponymous role of the doomed monarch in ‘King Lear’ (Jun 10-Jul 24), which will co-star Globe boss Michelle Terry as Cordelia and The Fool. It’ll be directed by Helena Kaut-Howson.

Kathryn Hunter, King Lear, Shakespeare’s Globe, 2022
Photo by Kate Bones

Elsewhere and the season kicks off with archetypal romcom ‘Much Ado About Nothing’ (Apr 22-Oct 23), which will be directed by Lucy Bailey, whose previous Globe shows ‘Titus Andronicus’ and ‘Macbeth’ were notoriously gory, although one assumes that won’t be the vibe here.

There’s an extremely rare opportunity to see ‘Henry VIII’ (May 19-Oct 21), the pageantry-heavy, quasi-history play perhaps best known for the fact that a misfiring special effect in a production caused the original Elizabethan Globe to burn down. The play, directed by Amy Hodge, undoubtedly has its problems – which is why writer Hannah Khalil has been roped in to serve as ‘third collaborator’ to widely-acknowledged co-authors Shakespeare and John Fletcher.

Later on there’s a revival of perennial fave ‘The Tempest’ (Jul 22-Oct 22) from Globe deputy Sean Holmes, and the season will end with a new play about Joan of Arc from writer Charlie Josephine, which is called ‘Joan’ (Aug 25-Oct 22). There’s also a touring production of ‘Julius Caesar’ that’ll call in at the Globe for a bit, a schools ‘Macbeth’ with public performances that’ll run in advance of the main season, a brand new kids’ production ‘Midsummer Mechanicals’ that serves as a sequel to the play-within-a-play from ‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream’, and CBeebies will be filming a pre-school version of ‘As You Like It’ on August 9 and 10 in front of a live audience.

Finally, the legendary Midnight Matinees will return, but there’ll only be two of them this year: ‘Julius Caesar’ on August 13 and ‘Much Ado’ on August 19.

Public booking for the new Globe season opens Friday February 11.

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