The Globe Theatre
History, diagrams & informational links
Built in 1599 by William Shakespeare's theatre company in London, the open-air Globe Theatre seated 3,000 and was three stories high. Made of wood, it burned to the ground in 1613 when a cannon shot during a performance of Shakespeare's Henry VIII set the gallery's thatched roof ablaze. A rebuilt Globe operated from 1614 to 1642, when Puritans (led by Oliver Cromwell) closed it as part of a "morality" campaign--along with many (if not all) other London theatres.
The Bard was one of six original owners of the venue, and as others were added to the roster, his share reportedly slid to only about 7% over time.
(pictured: Department 56 Globe Theatre replica)
A modern reconstruction of the Globe opened in 1997, about 750 feet from the original site. It offers wonderful live productions--Shakespeare, of course--for modern audiences. Tours and other educational programs are on tap, too.
- New World Encyclopedia: The Globe Theatre
Wondering why parts of Shakespeare's Globe were called "Heaven" and "Hell"? This writeup explains the layout, describes the audiences in Shakespeare's day, and outlines Globe Theatre history.
- Globe Theatre Study Guide
Useful for teachers, this guide touches on builders, actors & more.
- Shakespeare's Globe Theatre
Appealingly concise overview from absoluteshakespeare.com
- Overview of the theatre
Includes some nice detail on the backstage area and dressing rooms.
- Reconstructed Globe Theatre website
Everything you need to know about the modern Globe.
Visualize the venue - With diagrams and illustrations...
My son had to create a Globe Theater diagram for a school project and had a surprisingly hard time finding inspiration online. Ultimately he created this labeled drawing with bits & pieces of info he gathered. Came out pretty nice!
Unfortunately no labeling on this one, but it gives a sense of the in-the-round presentation audiences enjoyed.
illustration via thepowderedgemdiaries.blogspot.com
Check out the key for an explanation of different parts of the building, from the multipurpose "Heavens" ceiling above the stage to the entrance where collectors put a penny (bargain, eh?) from each visitor into a collection box -- hence the term "box office."
A brief educational clip ... - from the Kennedy Center
Lively audiences would snack on nuts and compete for attention with the actors onstage, explains a Shakespeare expert in this clip on the Globe Theatre. Several fun details like this are packed into just a couple minutes of video.
Globe Theatre history
These books brings it to life!
Created for kids but handy for all ages, Welcome to the Globe tells the story of the Globe Theatre through firsthand narrative by several characters --poor and wealthy theatregoers, an actor, an apple seller & a pickpocket -- who would have been there in 1602. Fact-filled sidebars deliver the educational goods.
Gifted illustrator (and writer) Aliki structures this lively book as a play, exploring Shakespeare's Globe "act by act."
Delight a fan of this Bard by gifting this 3D pop-up theatre, complete with 20 little punch-out characters and script booklets for two, to enact famous scenes. Lots of factual info too.
Way into the Globe? Check out this cool theatre replica.
Check out this cool theatre replica.
Have you toured the modern Globe Theatre reconstruction? Do you love Shakespeare? How's your day going? ;)