News Photo story

Welcome wanderers!

  After 429 days, our Globe Theatre reopened once more for Summer 2021 with A Midsummer Night’s Dream

6 minute read

It’s been a long journey since we closed our doors for performances last March 2020, and we’ve missed the hubbub of audiences in our Globe Theatre, filling the space with laughter, joy and love.

After 429 days, last week we were thrilled to welcome you all back to Bankside, as our fiesta-filled A Midsummer Night’s Dream got our Summer 2021 season underway. And we weren’t the only ones who were delighted to see the great oak doors of our Globe Theatre open once more – you all had plenty to say about it too! From our Acting Company to the wonderful members of staff that make up the Globe Family, our magnificent Volunteer Stewards to you our audiences, there was lots of love shared online for our wooden ‘O’…

A twilight night sky, with a glimpse of the moon, shines above the Globe Theatre stage: with colourful streamings hanging across the open-air roof.

After 429 days, last week we were thrilled to welcome you all back to Bankside for the opening of our Summer 2021 season. Photographer: Tristram Kenton

Blessing the Globe Theatre stage

Tuesday 18 May was a special night for the extended Globe Family as we invited friends and family to join us for the dress rehearsal of A Midsummer Night’s Dream. We began proceedings with a Globe tradition: at the start of each theatre season, we bless our stage and make a wish for the year ahead. Our very own Neil Constable and Michelle Terry were joined onstage by the Dean of Southwark Cathedral, Andrew Nunn (and after an explosion of whooping, clapping and many pairs of feet thundering down in celebration), we together reflected on the events of the past 14 months, but also the joys to come. Blessings and wishes shared, it was the moment we have waited for, for over a year – the magic of live theatre on our Globe Theatre stage once more. Safe to say it was a emotional evening for all!

Hand in hand with fairy grace
Will we sing and bless this place

— Titania, A Midsummer Night’s Dream

Audiences sit socially-distanced in a circular wooden theatre, watching three people onstage delivering a speech.

Dean of Southwark Cathedral, Andrew Nunn joins Neil Constable and Michelle Terry onstage to bless the opening of the season. Photographer: Pete Le May

‘In A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Theseus asks: Is there no play to ease the anguish of a torturing hour? For 429 days the answer has been no, but tonight the answer is finally yes. The anguish of this torturing year will finally be eased as we congregate once more to watch, hear, feel a play. Tonight we will be allowed to hope again. Tonight we will quite literally Dream again’

— Michelle Terry, Artistic Director

 

After one of the most isolating years, it was a thrill to be reunited as a Globe Family for the dress rehearsal of a A Midsummer Night’s Dream.

A large, white theatre with a thatched roof has people queueing outside it
Two audience members walk through a gate towards an open, outdoor theatre space
Two people sit together and watch a performance on an outdoor wooden stage

It was a joy to see our Globe Family all together for the first time in 14 months. Photographer: Pete Le May

Reopening our doors to audiences for the first time in 429 days

Seeing a familiar character return to our theatre and armed with a pack-list of essentials, we were ready to welcome audiences back into our wooden ‘O’ – we missed you!

An actor with their back to the camera watches on as another actor wearing an animal print tracksuit pretend to be a lion: gesturing claws with their hands and roaring.
An actor with a bright pink curled wig, and glittery corset top and trousers featuring pink and blue tassles, steps backwards smiling, pushing a bright blue large wheeliebin behind them. Other actors wearing brightly coloured costumes with googly eyes blow bubbles into the air.
A group of four actors wearing black and white doublets and trousers chase or run away from each other on stage.

Our Summer 2021 season opened with a bang with a fiesta-filled A Midsummer Night’s Dream. Photographer: Tristram Kenton

And not only have we welcomed over 3,000 of you through our doors for performances of A Midsummer Night’s Dream this past week, we’ve also welcomed one lucky Groundling to take part in the action of the play in each show – as the sixth member of the Rude Mechanicals, ______* Starveling, the joiner (*insert audience member name here), who perform the (hilarious) love story Pryamus and Thisbe before the Duke and Duchess of Athens on their wedding day. A huge hurrah to all our Starvelings so far, you’ve been sensational!

So all that’s left to say is thank you. Thank you for supporting us this past year as we’ve navigated the uncertain waters of the Covid-19 pandemic. Thank you for watching our online work from afar, wherever you are in the world. Thank you for sharing the love and chatting to us online. And thank you for returning to our Globe Theatre with the biggest smiles on your faces and lighting up the atmosphere with your energy, your joy, and your applause. We couldn’t do it without you.

Give us your hands if we be friends,
And the Globe shall restore amends.

— A Midsummer Night’s Dream

Actors smile and dance around a group of brass band musicians, playing the saxophone, drums, trumpet and trombone.

We cannot wait to welcome you all back to the Globe Theatre this summer! Photographer: Tristram Kenton

FINIS.


Our Summer 2021 season is now open with A Midsummer Night’s Dream. We look forward to seeing you in our Globe Theatre very soon!

If you cannot visit us in person, we’ll be livestreaming four of our summer shows. Discover more.

WE STILL NEED YOUR DONATIONS

After the most challenging year in our charity’s history, we still need our supporters to help us recover.

Please donate to help fund the future of Shakespeare’s Globe.

DONATE