The Second Globe
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How theatre effects history and how history effects theatre
The building of the 1st Globe and its effects on theatre Becky Cutler Naomi Sage
The First Globe • The first proper theatre as we know it was called the Theatre, built at Shoreditch, London in 1576 and the owner was James Burbage
•The first Globe was built in April 1597 • It was built due to the Lord Chamberlains playhouse being built on rented land and was closed down after the lease ran out. The landowner hated plays and refused to renew the lease. A year before the lease ran out James Burbage realised he would need a new home for his company. He bought tenements in Black friars and converted them into an indoor playhouse. However the neighbours objected and the theatre was closed down. • After James Burbage’s death his sons rented a new plot on Bankside in 1589. They hired a carpenter who took the theatre apart and brought it to the Bankside to build a new playhouse. •It was a 20-sided polygon, with galleries on three levels. The roof was thatched due to it being cheaper than a tiled roof, but it would eventually prove to be a fire hazard. • The Burbage’s shared their building costs with five members of the Lord Chamberlain's Men, including William Shakespeare. All the world's a stage; and all the men and women merely players.
• The globe theatre was not the first theatre to be build in London. Others included the Shoreditch (as mentioned earlier), The Rose Theatre and the Hope Theatre. However the Globe is the most famous due to the play performed there. Shakespeare's plays have had an impact on theatre through history due to the morals and themes the stories posses and the intelligence written into them. • Part of the reason for the theatre being build was to allow to props and for productions to become quite sophisticated. It also allowed for special effects and trap doors. •As there were no initial regulations in theater then it was possible to use plays as a vehicle for propaganda. Queen Elizabeth placed some regulations on performances •The audience could sometimes become violent and the crown needed controlling and soon published plays needed a license. • The objections toward theatre grew and soon all theatre was banned within london holding great effect on the Globe theatre.
•All theaters located in the City were forced to move to the South side of the River Thames.
The Second Globe • A Year after the fire destroyed the Globe, a second globe was erected on its site (Bankside) •This Globe was similar to the first structure, only the roof was tiled, not thatched. •The Globe lasted for three decades and in April 1644, two years after The Theatres of England were closed by the revolutionary government, Sir Matthew Brend who owned the site pulled it down and the Globe was replaced with tenements (flats). •This Globe, having been constructed of the timbers of the previous Globe was the same size and shape as the original making the remains if it had survived today very cherish able.
The New Globe Theatre. •
In the 1950’s American actor Sam Wanamaker came to London in search of the monument dedicated to Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre. Having reached the site of the Globe he found a dirty plaque on the side of the brewery dedicated to the famous theatre. He felt the Globe deserved better – a working theatre. After years of pressuring the British government to rebuild the Globe, Wanamaker took on the role himself along with his architect Theo Crosby. Twenty years later Wanamaker returned to London (1969) to begin work. He established the trust to steer the recon structure of the Globe using only the materials used in Shakespeare’s day. This was an immense task as well as costly. Wanamaker and Crosby worked tirelessly at their dream for decades. The theatre was opened in summer 1997, the delight was mixed with sadness as neither Wanamaker or Crosby lived to see it. Wanamaker died in 1993, even though he had not witnessed the building of the Globe, he at least knew that it was definitely going to happen. Crosby died the following year.
Shakespeare’s Globe theatre is a close approximation to the 1st Globe which stands 200 yards closer to the river than the original. On Opening night it was Zoë Wanamaker who filled her father’s shoes and spoke Shakespeare’s prologue in Henry V describing the transformations that have taken place at the Globe. The grounds of the original globe are partially under an apartment complex. Since exact dimensions of the original theatre had to be guessed, slight modifications have been made since the opening of the theatre based on archaeological digs at the Rose Theatre. The New Globe Theatre is the first Theatre in London in 400 years that has applied for a permit to have a thatched roof. Today the Globe holds both daytime and nigh time performances and sits 1000 people, almost half the amount the original Globe held.
Shakespeare and Chamberlains men •1594- For a brief time the Lord Chamberlain’s men acted in the Cross Keys inn in Gracious Street, but before the year had ended they had transferred to the Theatre, the house that James Burbage built. When they moved to the Globe on bankside Shakespeare followed them ·Later in James I’s reign, after the Chamberlain’s company had become the King’s Men, Shakespeare stayed on. ·For almost two decades Shakespeare was his company’s “ordinary poet” providing an average of two plays a season. ·In 1598 the company’s lease on the Theatre had run out and negotiations with the landlord, Giles Allen, broke down. They kept awake throughout the night od Dec 28,1598 to dismantle the Theatre (as their lease allowed) and transport the timber across the Thames to Bankside. The new playhouse that succeeded generations would be synonymous with Shakespeare’s wooden ‘O’, the Globe Theatre.
·In June 1613, during the first performance of Shakespeare’s Henry VIII, the playhouse burned to the ground. The next year the second Globe was erected in the same spot. ·The Queen saw Shakespeare’s plays when the Lord Chamberlain’s men were summoned to Richmond, Greenwich or Whitehall. On May 19,1603 a royal patent declared the Lord Chamberlain’s Men now become the King’s Men
The use of Shakespeare now and in the 1500’s Similarities •The modern Globe is still in use today •Theatre staging and techniques are still used now that were used in the 1500’s for example trapdoors, flying mechanisms and some special effects. •Shakespeares work can be relevant to everyday life now and in the past. However today has a wider context. • The language hasn’t changed in shakespears plays when performed today. Yet is still understood by the audience.
‘Shakespeare began modern theatre’
Differences • Women could not act in the Elizabethan era
•You had to be careful when writing plays in the 1500’s when talking about politics or royalty. Everything had to go through the Chamberlains men before being performed to check it was suitable. However today most justified subjects are allowed to be mentioned or performed. • Costume then was a sign of status and a performance acted as a fashion show. Today they are used more to represent the character. •Lighting is an important part of theatre today. In the past they only had daylight so all performaces were in the afternoon. •In shakespearean times the lines were often given to them on the day of the show and prompted. Yet today lines are learnt well in advance to the production.
Evaluation What theatre does for history • Attraction of the public to the theatre from the Elizabethan era increased. •The Globe has had more of an impact on history of theatre than ‘The Swan’ and ‘The Rose’ as Shakespeare's plays were presented at the Globe and became more popular as time went on. •It introduced the use of special effects such as flying mechanisms and trap doors. • The first Globe had such a huge impact at that time, that the following Globe’s were created to represent the original theatre proving its impact on the history of theatre. The same materials were used when building the newest Globe to recreate the original atmosphere.
What does history do for theatre? • Historic events are re-created through Shakespeare's plays providing entertainment for the theatre. • Women's rights affected women being allowed to perform on stage. These laws slowly changed throughout the Elizabethan era giving women more power and changing the dynamics of theatre. • The Ancient Greeks introduced theatre influencing the art of playwriting. This is why playhouses and outdoor areas began to be built to provide a space for the actors and allowing for props and effects to be more easily used in a controlled area. • The history of Shakespeare and the Globe has influenced modern play writers and directors for example ‘Shakespeare in Love’
Bibliography Websites: • http://www.icons.org.uk/theicons/collection/globe-theatre/biography/the-second-and-third-globes (visited 11th January 2008) • www.pbs.org/wnet/changingstages/episode1.html (visited 11th January 2008) • http://www.icons.org.uk/theicons/collection/globe-theatre/biography/building-the-first-globe (visited 18th •
January 2008) http://www.william-shakespeare.info/william-shakespeare-globe-theatre.htm
Books • The Third Globe- Symposium for the reconstruction of the Globe Playhouse, Wayne State University 1979. Reference number: 792.0942164 SHA Pages: 82 • Shakespeare The Globe and The World – S.Schoenbaum » Reference Number: 822.33 SCH » Pages: 52-146 • Shakespearean Playhouses – A history of English theatres from the beginning to the restoration 1917 Joseph Quincy Adams. • Shakespeare at the Globe 1599-1609 – Bernard Beckerman 1962