London Stars: The Globe

June 23, 2014

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As I’m having a few months in London with no holidays I thought I would start writing a bit about the things I get up to. I’m still very much a tourist in London even after being here over a year. I love being able to be a tourist in my own city – it means I can navigate easily but still get to do something new and exciting almost every weekend!

When I was younger, my parents would always take me and my sister to the theatre. I didn’t enjoy it too much when I was young but as I grew up I appreciated it more and more. So now being in London was a great opportunity to get out and see some shows.

The globe is a reconstruction of Shakespeare’s globe on the southbank in London. It’s main stage is open from May to September as it is outdoors. The theatre is a circular building facing a main stage. There is the option of standing in the yard (always a bargain at £6 but you do have to stand for 3 hours) or sitting in the stalls. There are three tiers of stalls and lots of options for seats. As there are a lot of columns in the theatre, almost every seat has a restricted view in some way. So when you are booking seat tickets, they vary from about £16 to £40. We usually get seats in the £25-£30 range and even though there is a slight restriction it has never bothered me! The theatre knows that none of the seats can view everything so they make sure to move the action around.

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I think one of the globes biggest highlights is its audience interaction. If you are standing in the yard then expect to be moved out of the way a lot as actors run around you, they appear everywhere and even address the audience directly in some parts of the play.

If you haven’t been a lover of Shakespeare then I still think going to the globe is a must do. Reading some of Shakespeare’s plays at school can sometimes be slightly dull but I think that is because you are reading a play in a classroom. Seeing the plays performed in the manner and theatre they are designed for brings a whole new dimension to the works. For example, I studied the tempest at school, I did enjoy it but never really found it entertaining – just a play to put across themes. But when I went to see it last year at the globe, it was amazing. I was entertained and laughed through most of it! Something I wasn’t expecting.

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Along with the Tempest, I also saw Midsummer Nights Dream last year which was great. This year I wanted to see some shows which weren’t comedies so I went for Titus Andronicus. This is still on at the globe now and I would highly recommend it! Even though a lot of reviews say it was very bloody and gory with reams of people passing out and needing to leave, I didn’t think it was bad at all. Sure there is blood but it is obviously fake. Although this is a tragedy and almost every character is killed, I found it quite funny a lot of the time as the characters cracked jokes and danced around the audience. It did have it’s serious moments but these were done well and overall it was probably my favourite show I have seen so far at the Globe.

I’m heading to the globe one more time this year – to see Anthony and Cleopatra. If you are in London for the summer then I highly recommend either booking a seat or going down one warm evening and getting a standing ticket.

Have you been to the Globe? What shows in London would you recommend?

JC xx

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