Shakespeare’s Globe productions for the 2018 season include Hamlet, As You Like It, The Two Noble Kinsmen, The Winter’s Tale, Othello and Love’s Labour’s Lost. A premiere of three new plays, a national and international tour of Shakespeare and other performances on and off site are announced together with a year-long programme of events exploring the history and future of theatre censorship, as well as a series of events looking at race, refuge and refugees in relation to Shakespeare.
This year will be Michelle Terry’s first season as Artistic Director and many of the plays are popular favourites of the Globe audience.
Opening the season on 25 April will be Hamlet, which will play alongside As You Like It from 2 May. These plays will be presented by The Globe Ensemble, which includes, amongst others, the following artists: Federay Holmes, Bettrys Jones, Jack Laskey, Nadia Nadarajah, Pearce Quigley, Shubham Saraf, Elle While, Tanika Yearwood and Michelle Terry.
Brendan O’Hea will direct a tour of eight actors with The Merchant of Venice, The Taming of the Shrew and Twelfth Night. The three plays will open at the Globe before setting out on a national and international tour where they will offer the audience the chance to pick their choice from the three plays, mimicking a tradition from Shakespeare’s day.
From 25 May, The Two Noble Kinsmen by John Fletcher and William Shakespeare will be directed by Barrie Rutter. Barrie is soon to be directing and appearing in his forthcoming production of The Captive Queen in the Sam Wanamaker Playhouse as part of the 2017/18 winter season, coproduced by Northern Broadsides. The Two Noble Kinsmen will be Barrie’s first play since stepping down as Artistic Director of Northern Broadsides. From 22 June, The Winter’s Tale will be directed by Blanche McIntyre. Blanche returns to the Globe, having previously directed The Comedy of Errors (2014) and As You Like It (2015).
In response to Refugee Week (18 – 24 June), the Globe will present a festival of events exploring Shakespeare’s response to refuge and refugees. The week will include the premiere of Nanjing, a piece about identity, dispossession, and the consequences of war. Written and performed by Jude Christian, it tells the story of the Nanjing Massacre of 1937, frequently referred to as the Rape of Nanking.
From 20 July, Othello will be directed by Claire van Kampen, starring André Holland as Othello and Mark Rylance as Iago. André Holland is best known for his roles in Academy Award-winning films Moonlight and Selma.
Mark Rylance is currently starring in the Globe’s production of Farinelli and the King on Broadway . Claire van Kampen wrote Farinelli and the King. From 1997, she was the Globe’s founding Director of Theatre Music, creating both period and contemporary music for approximately 50 of the Globe’s productions.
Throughout February to September, a series of events will focus on Shakespeare and Censorship. Censorship of British theatre started in 1737 and officially ended 50 years ago on 26 September 1968. This bold series of events explores censorship from historical, national and international viewpoints, and explores what the future may hold. From 12 August, Shakespeare and Race will be a festival of events which will include performances, workshops, public lectures, panels and an international conference. Curated to draw attention to and provide a platform for scholars, practitioners and educators of colour in the teaching, study and performance of Shakespeare, this festival will highlight the importance of race to the consideration of Shakespeare not only in his time, but more urgently, in our own.
From 23 August, Love’s Labour’s Lost will be directed by Nick Bagnall in the Sam Wanamaker Playhouse.
Two new plays will premiere on The Globe stage this summer. Morgan Lloyd Malcolm’s Emilia (10 August – 1 September), directed by Nicole Charles, will explore the life of Emilia Bassano, whom many consider to be the Dark Lady of the Sonnets, but was also a writer, poet, mother, feminist and woman in her own right.
Emilia will be followed by Matt Hartley’s Eyam (15 September – 13 October), directed by Adele Thomas. When the plague arrives surprisingly in the Derbyshire village of Eyam in 1665, the community face the moral dilemma of having to decide whether to flee and risk spreading the vicious disease or stay, protect others from the risk, but face the potential of their own slow and painful death.
As part of a series of scenes, sonnets and songs, a unique event at Westminster Abbey, All Places that the Eye of Heaven Visits returns. In celebration of Shakespeare’s birthday, Mark Rylance will join a company of 23 actors, as Shakespeare’s plays, poetry and song are brought to life in fleeting and intimate encounters throughout the Abbey.
Shakespeare’s birthday weekend will also include the Globe and Mark’s annual Sonnet Walks: Sweet Love Remember’d, a walk through Shakespeare’s London brought alive by actors. Conceived by Mark Rylance, Sonnet Walks: Sweet Love Remember’d will take place Saturday 28 April – Sunday 29 April, tracing routes through Westminster and the City and finishing at the Globe. This sonnet journey will culminate in Sonnet Sunday: Ten Times Happy Me (2 September). This site specific venture will give audiences the rare opportunity to experience all of the sonnets from 1 – 154 over the course of one day.
If you would like further information or book tickets, visit the Shakespeare’s Globe website here
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