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Macbeth: A Conjuring (Shakespeare’s Globe) @ The Sam Wanamaker Playhouse

Macbeth: A Conjuring is a welcome anomaly in the era of streamed and socially distanced theatre. For Bonfire Night 2020, as part of its ‘Shakespeare and Fear’ festival, the Globe reunited the cast of its 2018 Macbeth (reviewed on The Bardathon here) to offer a socially distanced, partially staged reading of the play. It’s a great use …

Romeo and Juliet (Playing Shakespeare with Deutsche Bank) @ Shakespeare’s Globe

The Globe’s choice to release recordings of its Playing Shakespeare productions for young people alongside several of its summer season productions during lockdown has been an inspired choice. Fast, clear and full of energy, Michael Oakley’s version of Romeo and Juliet – filmed efficiently by Glenn Barton – gets a laugh as the Chorus (spoken …

The Winter’s Tale (Renegade Theatre) @ Shakespeare’s Globe (via Globe Player)

The Winter’s Tale is structured, at roughly its mid-point, around a passage of time. It’s a play whose passage of sixteen years allows for an evocation of long regret and mourning, of aging and changing, of memory and forgiveness (or not). But in Ìtàn Ògìnìntìn, performed at the Globe as part of the 2012 Globe to …

The Merry Wives of Windsor @ Shakespeare’s Globe (webstream)

In releasing its 2019 The Merry Wives of Windsor as one of its free YouTube premieres, the Globe justly celebrates one of its finest ensembles (who later in the year went on to perform in Bartholomew Fair). Elle While’s thirties-set production is a jolly, entertaining farce that treats the play with the light touch it …

Macbeth (Playing Shakespeare with Deutsche Bank) @ Shakespeare’s Globe (webstream)

At a taut ninety minutes, the Playing Shakespeare production of Macbeth staged at Shakespeare’s Globe in early 2020 – just before the pandemic shut down theatres – converts well into a pacey film that preserves the raw energy of a production performed to thousands of schoolchildren (always a reliably vocal audience, especially at the Globe) …

Women Beware Women (Shakespeare’s Globe) @ The Sam Wanamaker Playhouse

For a play of dark corners, shadowy deeds and masque-like spectacle, the Sam Wanamaker is surely the perfect playhouse. In Amy Hodge’s debut production for the Globe, and in collaboration with designer Joanna Scotcher, the SWP was darkened further than usual, with black tiling on floor and tiring house wall, and covers over the lanterns, …

Christmas at the (Snow)Globe @ Shakespeare’s Globe

Is it a Christmas show or a Shakespeare show? At the heart of Sandi Toksvig and Jennifer Toksvig’s joyful festive residency at the Globe lay an irreverent contestation over the space, whether reserved for ‘serious acting’ or opened up for community celebration. As a site-specific and original holiday entertainment, it spoke to the unique power …

Richard III (Shakespeare’s Globe) @ The Sam Wanamaker Playhouse

It may now have been a new play, with a new king (Sarah Amankwah’s Edward IV) and his courtiers standing for a family portrait, but the stage of Richard III bore all the scars of the Wars of the Roses. Edward and his wife Elizabeth (Nina Bowers) stood centrally in the family group, atop the …

Henry VI (Shakespeare’s Globe) @ The Sam Wanamaker Playhouse

NB: This review is based on a preview performance. Henry VI, the fifth entry in the Globe’s 2019 Histories Cycle, was a production of compromises, if not a compromised production. Reuniting the ensemble that performed 1 Henry IV, 2 Henry IV and Henry V over the summer (with a couple of replacement members), the decision …

Bartholomew Fair (Shakespeare’s Globe) @ The Sam Wanamaker Playhouse

Please note – this review is of a preview performance. The sprawling Bartholomew Fair is an enormous play, a cast of seemingly thousands jostling shoulders in one of London’s most notorious fairs. Hosting it in the relatively bijou Sam Wanamaker was a bold choice, but Blanche McIntyre (with designer Ti Green) transformed it to maximise …