Saturday 8 September, 2.00pm
|TicketsYard (standing) £5 | Gallery (seated) from £22||Running timeApprox. 2 hours 20 minutes including an interval|
‘Thy frank election make’
All’s Well That Ends Well, Act II, scene 3
We will be taking Twelfth Night, The Taming of the Shrew and The Merchant of Venice on tour to various venues across the world. On the night of the performance, audiences will vote on which play they want to see performed. The tour will start and end on the Globe stage. For Globe performances, you can either choose to see a specific performance, or come to a ‘Voter’s Choice’ performance where the decision will be in your hands. Please refer to the dates and locations below for details.
How did a company tour in Shakespeare’s day? We know that when the theatres closed, a small group of actors, juggling a variety of roles in three or four plays from their extensive repertoire, would leave London and head off on tour. We also know that the choice of play or entertainment was left to the most powerful person of the household.
So, following in the tradition of our resident playwright, and in a first for Shakespeare’s Globe, between May and September 2018 a company of eight actors will offer audiences a choice of three plays: The Merchant of Venice, The Taming of the Shrew and Twelfth Night. They will perform all three at the Globe before setting out on a national and international tour. And also in keeping with tradition – and with thrilling unpredictability – the choice of play will be put back into the hands of the most powerful members of the house: the audience.
Brendan O’Hea, director, actor, and passionate education practitioner, has previously performed in a number of productions at Shakespeare’s Globe including Cymbeline (2015), Measure for Measure(2015), A Midsummer Night’s Dream (2014), and Henry V (2012).
‘The combination of Shakespeare, the Globe and touring ticks every box for me. The chance to share those glorious words and my experience of playing that beautiful theatre with audiences throughout the world excites me beyond measure. And I’m relishing the opportunity to direct three of Shakespeare’s most popular plays in a unique and unpredictable presentation.’
In Venice, the epicentre of consumption, speculation and debt, Bassanio borrows money from his friend Antonio to finance his attempt to win the hand of Portia, a wealthy heiress. Antonio, in turn, takes out a loan from the moneylender Shylock. The loan will be repaid when Antonio’s ships return to the city. But if they should fail, and the money cannot be repaid, Antonio shall give to Shylock a pound of his own flesh. And they do fail. And Shylock will have his ‘bond’.
In some of his most highly-charged scenes, Shakespeare dramatises the competing claims of tolerance and intolerance, justice and mercy, while in the character of Shylock he created one of the most memorable outsiders in all theatre.