Time Out says
First-class theatre in a lovingly recreated Elizabethan setting
Shakespeare’s Globe is shut indefinitely due to the coronavirus outbreak. No shows are currently bookable.
Built in 1599 and destroyed by fire in 1613, the original Globe Theatre was at the heart of London’s seedy South London entertainment district in William Shakespeare’s time. Here, productions were put on by the Lord Chamberlain’s Men, who included in their company old Bill himself.
Fast forward to 1997, when, following a decades-long campaign run by the late American actor Sam Wanamaker, Shakespeare's famous wooden 'O' was recreated near its original site, using timber, thatch, and immaculately researched Elizabethan detail. You can get to grips with this theatre's history at its daytime tours, but there's a lot to be said for experiencing it in action. The venue's popular 'groundling' tickets invite punters to stand in front of the stage for just £5, or there's an option to get a more comfy view of the action from galleried bench seating. This outdoor space is closed in winter. But more recently, Shakespeare's Globe added the Sam Wanamaker Playhouse – a candlelit indoor theatre within the Globe’s building, which presents plays in a traditional Jacobean setting.
Artistically, there’s a commitment to the Bard, but within that it’s one of London’s liveliest and occasionally most controversial theatres.
Founding artistic director Mark Rylance led from the front: one of the world’s great actors, he still returns now and again. Just don’t ask him about whether he thought Shakespeare wrote all his own plays.
Dominic Dromgoole, the longest serving artistic director, had a reputation for being somewhat combatitive, but ushered in something of a golden age for the theatre, and oversaw the completion of the indoor Sam Wanamaker Playhouse that allowed programming to go year round.
Emma Rice brought two scintillatingly good seasons of work to the Globe before she was forced out by the theatre's board, who were annoyed at her propensity for using amplified light and sound in productions. They wanted to restrict her; she walked.
The current artistic director is Michelle Terry. An actor-manager in the Rylance mould, she has focussed her efforts on diversity and actor-friendliness, and has already had her first hit with new feminist play 'Emilia', a story of Shakespeare's 'Dark Lady' which landed a West End transfer.
New Globe Walk
|Transport:||Tube: Blackfriars/Mansion House/London Bridge|
|Price:||Exhibition and tour: £15, £13.50 60-plus, £12.50 students, £9 under-16s, free under-fives, £41 family.|
|Opening hours:||Globe Exhibition and Tour daily 9am–5pm. Closed Dec 24 and 25. (Check in advance for dates when the tour is not available.)|
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Women Beware Women – CANCELLED
‘Women Beware Women’ has been cancelled as a result of the coronavirus epidemic. There aren’t many things that can out-camp a Jacobean tragedy, but an ‘80s soap opera is one of them. Here, somewhat gloriously, director Amy Hodge has given Thomas Middleton’s...Drama Until Saturday April 18 2020
‘The Taming of the Shrew’ review
‘The Taming of the Shrew’ has been cancelled as a result of the coronavirus epidemic. There’s probably a German word for the precise feeling of frustration you get watching Globe artistic director and world-class Shakespearean actor Michelle Terry sat...Shakespeare Saturday April 11 2020 - Saturday April 18 2020
Romeo & Juliet
‘Romeo & Juliet’ is clearly going to be the Shakespeare play of 2020, with big productions lined up at the National Theatre and Open Air Theatre. Before that, though, the Globe kicks off its outdoor season with rising star director Ola Ince making her...Shakespeare Tuesday April 14 2020 - Sunday July 12 2020
A summer season of Shakespearean crowdpleasers continues at the Globe, with associate director Sean Holmes helming the beloved ‘Twelfth Night’. Expect a slightly more twisted than usual take on the melancholic mistaken identity comedy from the artsy Holmes....Shakespeare Friday May 15 2020 - Saturday October 3 2020
Antony & Cleopatra
Globe boss Michelle Terry makes her usual seasonal acting performance in what’s being billed as a ‘radical reimagining’ of Shakespeare’s great romantic history, ‘Antony & Cleopatra’. Deaf actor – and Globe regular – Nadia Nadarajah will take on the role...Shakespeare Sunday May 24 2020 - Saturday August 29 2020
Much Ado About Nothing
The Globe’s 2020 outdoor season continues apace with another crowdpleaser: archetypal romcom ‘Much Ado About Nothing’. As of season announcement, we don’t know much about this production, including who will play iconic couple Beatrice and Benedick. But...Shakespeare Friday June 19 2020 - Sunday October 4 2020
The end-of-summer-season new writing slot – a Globe staple under Dominic Dromgoole and Emma Rice – seems to not have quite the same place in Michelle Terry’s heart. But after no new work in 2019, this seems like a compromise: for 2020 a trio of writers...Drama Friday September 4 2020 - Saturday October 3 2020
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We did he tour which was interesting but over priced and quite short. I would recommend going to see a show instead.
Always amazing! I love how contemporary the productions have been in the last two years. Shame that the creative director is leaving the post already. The old men just can't take the brilliance of a woman!
Quite simply this has to be done at least once in your life .....fabulous , although a little chilly x
For more than 400 years, we have had the amazing plays of Shakespeare - now we have the instrument for which they were written! Wonderful! :-)
Went to England in 2000 for the first time just to see the Globe - what a fantastic experience! I have been back several times and sat through 3 plays one day last July. I recommend it to everyone who is in town for more than a day or two.
WE love our visit to the Globe. The guide was fantastic. We enjoy the guided tour and love the lay out theatre. Absolutelly fantastic.
Visiting the Globe is a highlight of any trip to the capital and I recommend the standing tickets to be at the heart of the action!