Award-winning actor Sheila Atim takes Shakespeare from stage to screen

Sheila Atim (Viola)
Sheila Atim (Viola)

Sheila Atim (Viola)

2018 Olivier Award winner Sheila Atim follows Othello at Shakespeare’s Globe with the Bard’s shipwrecked twins, Viola and Sebastian, in a new screen adaptation of Twelfth Night.

Adapted & directed by Adam Smethurst, with Welsh actor Rakie Ayola (No Offence/C4, Been So Long/Netflix and Harry Potter and The Cursed Child/West End) as Executive Producer, Twelfth Night is available on Amazon Prime and iTunes from Thursday 25 October 2018.

 This is a modern, full text version of Shakespeare’s tale of unrequited love, featuring Zackary Momoh (Seven Seconds/Netflix) as Antonio and Dominic Coleman (Upstart Crow/BBC) as Sir Andrew Aguecheek among its talented cast.

Twelfth Night is the first feature from Shanty Productions; a new independent film production company committed to producing exceptional drama for diverse, multicultural audiences – creating worlds they recognise and characters they can relate to on accessible platforms for today’s digital natives.

Commenting on the driving force behind Shanty Productions, Co-Founder Rakie Ayola said, “It is essentially the realisation that Adam and I could put our money where our mouths are, channel our skills and produce the kind of work we want to see. Work that combines our love of Shakespeare with our need to represent the world as we see it – as we’d like our daughters and their contemporaries to see it.”

On his decision to start with an adaptation of Twelfth Night, Adam Smethurst explained, “With the widespread rise of anti-immigrant populism and governments actively encouraging a hostile environment for refugees, telling the story of the outsider surviving in an alien world on her wit, charm and ingenuity became and remains compellingly urgent.”

Lead actor Sheila Atim added, “We’re not trying to dumb Shakespeare down; we’re not trying to make it what it isn’t so people can digest it. We’re staying absolutely true to what it is. We’re just bringing it forward to a time when people may feel like they can connect with it more.”

Shakespeare’s Globe Launches Podcast

Shakespeare's Globe

Shakespeare’s Globe is has announced the launch today of Such Stuff, a brand new podcastSuch Stuff is hosted by Artistic Director, Michelle Terry, producer Imogen Greenberg and Head of Higher Education and Research, Dr. Farah Karim-Cooper.

The fortnightly episodes will be released on Thursdays and will cover the themes of the Globe’s work, taking the listener behind-the-scenes, into rehearsal rooms, and onto the stage. The title of the podcast was drawn from the line “We are such stuff as dreams are made on” in The Tempest. Looking at Shakespeare’s transformative impact on the world around us, Such Stuff will be split into summer and winter seasons, asking questions about programming, gender, race, social justice and their relationship to Shakespeare.

This is the latest step in the Globe’s expanding digital content, which includes Globe Player, an online platform offering full-length HD films of over 50 Shakespeare productions at the Globe to rent or buy. The first two episodes of Such Stuff are available on iTunes, Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher, Pocket Casts and other major podcast platforms.

The episodes are thematic, including interviews, discussions and sneak peeks into all of the Globe’s work. Episode 1 is entitled ‘The Missing Women’, and asks why is it so important to reclaim the untold stories of women from history? Emilia Bassano was a poet, writer, feminist and contemporary of Shakespeare, and until recently, her contribution to the literary canon was largely forgotten. Now she is the subject of a new play, Emilia, and the Emilias who appear throughout Shakespeare’s work have underpinned the entire summer season. Such Stuff explores what we do and don’t know about the real Emilia Bassano with Research Fellow Dr Will Tosh and goes behind-the-scenes with writer Morgan Lloyd Malcolm and director Nicole Charles. The podcast will also be taking a look at imbalances off of our stages, speaking to Emma Caplan of Band of Mothers about the missing women in our workforces. Finally, Kate Pankhurst, author of bestselling ‘Fantastically Great Women Who Made History’, discusses why young children need more stories of women from history.

Episode 2 is called Refugee Week and takes a look at the dedicated week the Globe took part in to ask ‘how can art respond to the crises of our times?’. There are discussions with artists and theatre-makers who took part in this nationwide celebration of refugees. Writer Jude Christian and director Elayce Ismail discuss Nanjing, a monologue which reflects on pacifism and the responsibility of the individual from 1937 to the present. Jude tells her own family story, the story of the notorious Nanjing Massacre, and asks what each of us can do when atrocities occur across the world. Syrian Canadian visual artist and educator Dima Karout takes us behind the scenes of her Border Installation, explaining why she wanted to get audiences to participate and think about their own lives – and the lives of refugees – a little differently, and shares some of the incredible contributions left by our audiences. Finally, actors and refugees bring you The Strangers’ Case, Shakespeare’s cry for compassion for the plight of refugees.

Episode 3 is called The Ensemble Experiment, going behind-the-scenes with the Globe Ensemble. Director Federay Holmes and Research Fellow Dr Will Tosh explain the inspiration behind the ensemble, and how Shakespeare and the Lord Chamberlain’s Men were radical before their time. They also discuss casting, gender swapping and giving actors parts they can really play. Actor Shubham Saraf discusses the rehearsal room and his role as Ophelia, and Michelle Terry sits down with Jack Laskey to talk Hamlet and Rosalind, and whether gender really plays a role in playing these roles.

Shakespeare’s Globe announces full casting for Matt Hartley’s new play Eyam


Shakespeare’s Globe has announced full casting for Matt Hartley’s new play Eyam, directed by Adele Thomas, opening in The Globe on Saturday 15 September. When the plague arrives surprisingly in the Derbyshire village of Eyam in 1665, the community face a moral dilemma. They must decide whether to flee and risk spreading the vicious disease, or stay, protect others from the risk, and face the potential of their own slow and painful death.

The Eyam company are also currently appearing in the Globe’s production of Blanche McIntyre’s The Winter’s Tale, with the exception of Sam Crane and John Paul Connolly.

Sam Crane will play William Mompesson. Sam recently appeared as Farinelli in the Globe’s production of Claire van Kampen’s Farinelli and the King which transferred to London’s West End and Broadway following a sell-out run at the Sam Wanamaker Playhouse. Other theatre work includes Sunset at the Villia Thalia and Dissonant (National Theatre).

Priyanga Burford is Katherine Mompesson. Priyanga’s previous theatre work includes Consent (National Theatre), The Effect (Sheffield Crucible) and Behud (Soho Theatre). Television credits include Press, W1A, King Charles III (BBC), Fearless, Marcella (ITV) and Babylon (Channel 4). Films include Criminal and The Long Way Down.

Annette Badland will play Reverend Stanley. Annette’s previous theatre credits include Stranger At The Table (Pascal Theatre Company), Far Away (Bristol Old Vic), Kin and Hung Over (Royal Court). Television work includes EastEnders (BBC), Outlander (Starz) and Father Brown (BBC). Film includes A Quiet Passion, The Girl in a Bubble and Mother’s Milk.

John Paul Connolly is John Hancock. John’s previous theatre work includes Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom (National Theatre), A Midsummer Night’s Dream (The Factory) and The Tempest (Improbable Theatre). Television includes Victoria (ITV).

Oliver Ryan is Unwin. Oliver’s previous theatre work includes Dr Faustus, Romeo and Juliet, Morte D’Arthur (RSC), Glengarry Glen Ross (West End) and Oresteia (Trafalgar Studios). Television work includes Casualty (BBC) and Stella (Sky). He also appeared in the film All the Money in the World, directed by Ridley Scott.

Will Keen will play John Sydall. Will’s previous theatre work includes Ghosts (Almeida/Brooklyn Academy of Music), Quartermaine’s Arms (Wyndham’s Theatre) and Hysteria (Theatre Royal Bath). Television includes The Crown (Netflix), The Musketeers and Wolf Hall (BBC).

Sirine Saba will play Mary Cooper. Sirine appeared on the Globe stage as Regan in Nancy Meckler’s King Lear last summer. Sirine’s other theatre work includes Goats (Royal Court), Why It’s Kicking Off Everywhere (Young Vic) and The Invisible (Bush Theatre). Television credits include The Black Forest (Urban Fox), Clean Break (ITV), Holby City and Silent Witness (BBC).

Adrian Bower will play Phillip Sheldon. Adrian’s previous theatre work includes The Herd (Bush Theatre), Ordinary Dreams (Trafalgar Studios), Hedda (Gate Theatre), and Mr Heracles (West Yorkshire Playhouse). His screen credits include Loves Lies and Records and The Last Kingdom (BBC) and Mount Pleasant (Sky).

Norah Lopez-Holden is Emmott Sydall. Norah recently graduated from RADA and was awarded ‘Best Newcomer’ at the Manchester Theatre Awards in 2017 for her role in Polly Findlay’s Ghosts. Other theatre credits include Othello (Tobacco Factory/ETT), Our Town and The Almighty Sometimes (Manchester Royal Exchange).

Howard Ward is Marshall Howe. Howard’s previous theatre work includes Wild Honey (Hampstead Theatre), German Skerries (Orange Tree Theatre) and Monsieur Popular (Theatre Royal Bath). Television includes Little Boy Blue (ITV), The Trial and Drifters (Channel 4).

Becci Gemmell will play Elizabeth Sydall and Mary Talbot. Becci’s previous theatre work includes The Here and This and Now (Plymouth Theatre Royal), Noises Off (Notts Playhouse), and Much Ado About Nothing (Royal Exchange). Television includes Call the Midwife.

Luke MacGregor will play Edward Cooper and Rolland Torre. Luke’s recent theatre work includes Titus Andronicus, Antony and Cleopatra and Julius Caesar (RSC/Barbican). Radio includes Tarantula, Somewhere in England and Little Women (BBC).

Zora Bishop will play Elizabeth Sheldon and Elizabeth Hancock. Zora’s previous theatre work includes For Those Who Cry When They Hear the Foxes Scream (Tristan Bates), The Knot (The Orange Tree) and Hard Feelings (Finborough). Television includes Unforgotten.

Jordan Metcalfe is Francis Bockinge and George Viccars. Jordan’s recent theatre credits include The Culture (Hull Truck), For Love or Money (Northern Broadsides), The Hypocrite and Wendy and Peter (RSC).

Rose Wardlaw will play Harriet Stubbs. Rose’s recent theatre credits include Jubilee (Royal Exchange/Lyric Hammersmith) Dyl (Old Red Lion) and Glitter Punch (Bunker).

Adele Thomas’s previous Globe credits include Thomas Tallis (2014 & 2015), The Oresteia (2015) and The Knight of the Burning Pestle (2014 & 2015). Other credits include Cosi Fan Tutte (Northern Ireland Opera), The Weir (ETT), Macbeth (Tobacco Factory), The Bloody Ballad (Gagglebabble and Tour), The Passion and The Passion: One Year On (as Project Associate for National Theatre Wales), Under Milk Wood (Royal & Derngate), No Vacancies and Delugue (Sherman Cymru).

Matt Hartley’s recent work includes Myth (RSC), Here I Belong (Pentabus) and Deposit (Hampstead). He won the Bruntwood Award with Sixty Five Miles (Paines Plough / Hull Truck Theatre).

The full cast includes: Annette Badland, Zora Bishop, Adrian Bower, Priyanga Burford, John Paul Connolly, Sam Crane, Becci Gemmell, Will Keen, Norah Lopez-Holden, Luke MacGregor, Jordan Metcalfe, Oliver Ryan, Sirine Saba, Howard Ward and Rose Wardlaw.


Shakespeare’s Globe announces programme for festival ‘Shakespeare and Race’

Shakespeare and Race
Shakespeare and Race

Shakespeare and Race

Shakespeare’s Globe has announced the programme for ‘Shakespeare and Race’, a new festival of events opening 11 August. This is the first time in the Globe’s twenty-year history that the topic will be explored in depth over a week. Curated to draw attention to and provide a platform for scholars, practitioners and educators of colour in the teaching, study and performance of Shakespeare, this festival will highlight the importance of race to the consideration of Shakespeare not only in his time, but more urgently, in our own. The festival includes a play American Moor by Keith Hamilton Cobb, a workshop entitled Staging Race and Diversity in the Shakespearean TheatreThe Sam Wanamaker Fellowship Lecture is to be given by Professor Kim F. Hall, a pre-show talk for Emilia with Morgan-Lloyd Malcolm, a panel discussion of actors who have played Othello, and an international symposium featuring Kimberlé Crenshaw, Professor of Law at Columbia Law School and UCLA, who coined the term ‘intersectionality’. The festival starts and finishes with two theatre productions, Voices in the Dark and Hip-hop Shakespeare Unplugged.

Dr. Farah Karim-Cooper, Director of the Festival and Head of Higher Education & Research, said: “This festival aims to address the racial imbalances that exist not only in the industry of theatre but also in Shakespeare studies. As an iconic Shakespeare organisation we are duty bound to engage scholars and artists of all backgrounds and facilitate important and, at times, difficult conversations about the ways in which race is being represented in theatre and in the field. Shakespeare’s Globe must have this important conversation as a confident rebuttal to a dangerous regression to white privilege.”

Margaret Casely-Hayford, Chair of Shakespeare’s Globe, said: Shakespeare’s ability to give an eloquent voice to people of different backgrounds and in widely differing emotional states speaks to and for all of us and is what makes him enduringly powerful. He is part of all of our heritage. I am thrilled by the fact that he articulated the passion and the anguish of Italian teenagers, Scottish royals, Roman statesmen, English peasants, Danish aristocracy, a Jewish merchant and an African who was a member of the Venetian military high command! In that context it is even more thrilling that there is so much intrigue about who really was his ‘dark lady’. It is clear that he was convinced that none of us is just one thing. The festival celebrates that fact and gives those of us who don’t ordinarily claim him so readily as part of our heritage, an ability and focus to do so.”

Opening the festival will be Voices in the Dark, personal stories written by young British Muslims performed alongside scenes devised by Intermission Youth Theatre. Highlighting the parallels between Shakespeare’s stories and these modern ones, scenes from his plays are woven into the evening. Intermission Youth Theatre is a charity working with young people who are disadvantaged, lacking in opportunity, at risk of offending or ex-offenders. All profits from the event will be donated to Intermission Youth Theatre, and Voices, a social start-up which aims to creatively challenge perceptions through the sharing and telling of people’s stories.

On 12 AugustAmerican Moor, an 85-minute play written and performed by African-American actor Keith Hamilton Cobb, will examine the experience and perspective of black men in America. There will be a post-performance discussion hosted and led by Michael Witmore, Director of the Folger Shakespeare Library in Washington D.C. The production has been performed across America, winning ‘Outstanding Solo Performance’ at the 2015 AUDELCO Awards. It was recognized by the Folger Shakespeare Library, and the script is now in the library’s permanent collection.

Keith Hamilton Cobb is best-known for his roles as Noah Keefer for ABC’s All My Children, for which he was nominated for a Daytime Emmy Award, Tyr Anasazi in Gene Rodenberrys Andromeda, Damon Porter in CBSs The Young and the Restless, and Quincy Abrams for the series Noahs Arc (Logo Network). Other television credits include The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, Boston Common, Suddenly Susan, One on One, The Twilight Zone, and CSI Miami. A prolific stage performer, Keith has performed in multiple Shakespearean plays, including HamletRomeo and JulietCoriolanusA Midsummer Night’s Dream, as well as more contemporary roles in David Mamet’Race, August Wilson’s Jitney, and Lynn Nottage’Ruined.

On Monday 13 August, a workshop entitled Staging Race and Diversity in the Shakespearean Theatre will study the relationship between staging practices and racial diversity. This will examine the privilege white actors have and disadvantage actors of colour experience due to choices of costume, set and lighting. The workshop will ask questions such as ‘does staging Shakespeare in historical dress present a challenge to directors and designers when it comes to racial diversity?’ Actors and scholars will come together to experiment, challenge and debate long-held assumptions about the relationship between casting, staging and race. The workshop will be led by Dr Erika Lin, Associate Professor at the Graduate Centre of New York (CUNY) and Dr Farah Karim-Cooper, Director of the Shakespeare and Race festival and Head of Higher Education and Research at the Globe. Erika specialises in early modern English theatre and culture with particular attention to embodied performance, affect, spectacle, and audience.

The Sam Wanamaker Fellowship Lecture is to be given by Professor Kim F. Hall on Tuesday 14 August. Kim F. Hall is the Lucyle Hook Chair of English and a Professor of Africana Studies at Barnard College. Her research and teaching cover Renaissance/Early Modern Literature and Culture, Critical Race Theory, Black Feminist Studies, Slavery Studies, Visual Culture, Food Studies, and Digital Humanities. Her book, Things of Darkness: Economies of Race and Gender in Early Modern England, (published 1996), used a black feminist approach to interpret Renaissance literature. She is currently working on two book projects: Sweet Taste of Empire, which examines the roles of race, aesthetics and gender in the Anglo-Caribbean sugar trade during the seventeenth century and a new project, Othello was My Grandfather: Shakespeare and the African Diaspora, which discusses Afrodiasporic appropriations of Othello.

Wednesday 15 August will see Morgan Lloyd Malcolm in conversation with the director Nicole Charles in a pre-show talk before Emilia. Morgan’s new play, Emilia, opens 10 August, directed by Nicole Charles. It will explore the life of Emilia Bassano, whom many consider to be the Dark Lady of the Sonnets, but was also a writer, poet, mother, feminist and woman in her own right. Playwright and screenwriter Morgan Lloyd Malcolm’s play Belongings (Hampstead Theatre, Trafalgar Studios) was shortlisted for The Charles Wintour Most Promising Playwright Award, followed by The Wasp(Hampstead Theatre, Trafalgar Studios). In 2016, she was selected for the BBC TV Drama Writers Programme and commissioned to write a 60-minute original television drama.

A panel discussion entitled Women and Theatre in Britain will take place on Thursday 16 August. It will explore what it means to be a woman of colour working in theatre in 21st century Britain. Participants will be playwrights, actors, directors and prominent women in theatre. Joan Iyiola will be taking part in the panel. Joan’s credits include The Duchess of MalfiLife of GalileoBoris Godunov,Orphan of Zhao (Royal Shakespeare Company), A Season in the Congo (Young Vic), The White Devil(RSC), Eclipsed (Gate Theatre), and They Drink It in the Congo (Almeida). Further participants are to be announced soon.

Playing Othello, on Friday 17 August, will see a panel discussion with actors who have played Othello in recent years and who will share their experiences of the role. Playing Othello will be chaired by the author of the most recent Arden introduction to Othello, Professor Ayanna Thompson (Arizona State University). The panel will include André Holland and Golda RosheuvelMore actors taking part in the panel discussion will be announced soon.

Golda Rosheuvel played Othello at the Liverpool Everyman earlier this year. Instead of a gender-swap, Golda played the role as a lesbian woman. Her theatre credits include Romeo & Juliet(Shakespeare’s Globe), A Pacifist’s Guide to the War on Cancer,, The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night Time (National Theatre), Electra, Carmen Jones (Old Vic), Marat/Sade, The Tempest, Julius Caesar, and Antony and Cleopatra (RSC). Screen credits include Lady MacbethEastEnders and Holby City (BBC). André Holland plays Othello this summer at the Globe, which opened 20 July. André is best known for his roles in Academy Award-winning films Moonlight and Selma. The multi-award-winning actor’s other screen credits include 42 and The Knick. Theatre credits include Jitney (Broadway), Blue Door (Playwrights Horizons), Wig Out (Vineyard Theatre), The Brother / Sister Plays (Public Theatre) and All’s Well That Ends Well (Shakespeare in the Park).

An international symposium will be held on Friday 17 and Saturday 18 AugustShakespeare and Race Across Borders: A Scholarly Symposium will bring together scholars from the disciplines of race, Shakespeare, theatre and performance studies to discuss the ways in which race is taught at university, discussed in the critical field and represented in performance. Featuring internationally renowned keynote speakers and panellists, the conference will generate important debate and open discussion about one of the most important and urgent issues in 21st-century Shakespeare studies.

Keynote speakers for the symposium comprise Kimberlé Crenshaw, Professor of Law at Columbia Law School and UCLA. She coined the term “intersectionality” and is a leader in the intellectual movement of Critical Race Theory. Crenshaw is a co-founder of the African American Policy Forum and the Women’s Media Initiative. Luke Harris is Associate Professor of American Politics and Constitutional Law at Vassar College and co-founder of the African American Policy Forum. He has written a series of critically acclaimed articles on equality in contemporary America. Devon Carbado is the author of Acting White? Rethinking Race in a “Post-Racial” America (Oxford University Press). He currently teaches at UCLA School of Law and has won numerous teaching awards, including the inaugural Fletcher Foundation Fellowship. Ayanna Thompson has written extensively on the subject of Shakespeare and race, including Passing Strange: Shakespeare, Race and Contemporary America (Oxford University Press) and, most recently, Shakespeare in the Theatre: Peter Sellars (Arden Bloomsbury). Professor Thompson is the 2018-19 President of the Shakespeare Association of America and Director of the Arizona Center for Medieval & Renaissance Studies at Arizona State University. Arthur L. Little is an Associate Professor of English at UCLA and author of numerous articles on Shakespeare, race and justice. Ania Loomba is the Catherine Byson Professor of English at the University of Pennsylvania where she researches and teaches early modern literature, race and feminist theory. Her latest publications include Rethinking Feminism in Early Modern Studies: Gender, Race and Sexuality (Routledge). Ian Smith is a professor of English and teaches courses on English, Women’s and Gender Studies and Africana studies at Lafayette College. His current research project, Black Shakespeare, examines Shakespeare’s interest in social and political racial identities. Joyce Green MacDonald is the author of Women and Race in Early Modern Texts (Cambridge University Press). She is the Associate Professor of English at the University of Kentucky.

Other speakers include Margo Hendricks (UC Santa Cruz), Kim F. Hall (Barnard College), Miles P. Grier (Queens College CUNY), Alfredo de Modenessi (National Autonomous University of Mexico), Carol Mejia-La Perle (Wright State University), Arne Pohlmeier (Two Gents Company), Tonderai Munyevu (Two Gents Company), Malcolm Cocks (Dulwich College and Globe Post-doctoral researcher on World Hamlet Globe-to-Globe), Taarini Mookherjee (Columbia University), Tripthi Pillai (Coastal Carolina University), Ruben Espinosa (UTEP), Michael Shane Boyle (Queen Mary University) and Patricia Akhimie (Rutgers University).

The final event of the festival will be in the Sam Wanamaker Playhouse on 18 AugustHip-hop Shakespeare Unplugged, from Akala and The Hip-hop Shakespeare Company. The show will feature the renowned Hip-hop Shakespeare house band and a range of undiscovered young talent performing a medley of songs inspired by scenes and themes from Shakespeare’s plays and sonnets. Founded by MOBO-award winning hip-hop artist Akala, The Hip-hop Shakespeare Company is a music theatre production company aimed at exploring the social, cultural and linguistic parallels between the works of William Shakespeare and that of modern day hip-hop artists.  

Shakespeare’s Globe announces full casting for Nick Bagnall’s Love’s Labour’s Lost

Love's Labour Lost
Love's Labour Lost

Love’s Labour Lost

Shakespeare’s Globe has announced full casting for Nick Bagnall’s Love’s Labour’s Lost, opening in the Sam Wanamaker Playhouse on Thursday 23 August.

Dharmesh Patel will play Berowne. Dharmesh returns to the Globe after starring in Barrie Rutter’s The Captive Queen in the Sam Wanamaker Playhouse earlier this year. Other recent theatre credits include Titus AndronicusAntony and Cleopatra and Julius Caesar (RSC), The Two Gentlemen of Verona and The Tempest (Shakespeare’s Globe). 

Kirsty Woodward is Princess of France. Kirsty appeared at The Globe in last year’s touring production of Tristan & Yseult, and has also appeared in Globe productions of Pericles and The Winter’s Tale. Her recent television work includes Bad Move (ITV) and Quacks (BBC).

Paul Stocker will play King of Navarre, returning to the Globe after appearing as Palamon in Barrie Rutter’s The Two Noble Kinsmen earlier this summer. Paul’s other theatre credits include The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time (West End), CoralA Thousand Stars Explode in the Sky(National Theatre Studio) and A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Regent’s Park). Television work includes DoctorsEastEnders and The Rack Pack (BBC).

Jade Williams is Rosaline. Jade has appeared in several Globe productions including Matthew Dunster’s Doctor Faustus, Raz Shaw’s God of Soho and Jessica Swale’s Bedlam. Jade’s other recent theatre work includes The Cherry OrchardThe Lower Depths (Arcola) and The Seagull (Chichester, National Theatre).

Tom Kanji will play Dumaine. Tom has appeared in numerous Globe productions including Michael Longhurst’s The Winter’s Tale, Dominic Dromgoole’s Pericles and John Dove’s Doctor Scroggy’s War. Other recent theatre work includes The Country Wife (Chichester) and The Box of Delights (Wilton’s Music Hall). Tom was also part of The Everyman Company 2017.

Leaphia Darko will play Katherine. Leaphia recently starred as Portia in Nicholas Hytner’s Julius Caesar at The Bridge Theatre. Other recent theatre credits include Cookies – The Cyberscene Project(Theatre Royal Haymarket) and Mary Stuart (Almeida).

Charlotte Mills is Boyet. Charlotte returns to the Globe stage after appearing in the Playing Shakespeare with Deutsche Bank schools production of Much Ado About Nothing earlier this year. Other recent theatre work includes The Country Wife (Chichester) and Abigail’s Party (Theatre Royal Bath). Television includes Moorside (BBC).

Jos Vantyler is Don Armado, also returning to the Globe after appearing in Barrie Rutter’s The Two Noble Kinsmen earlier this summer. Jos’s other recent theatre work includes For Love or Money and The Merry Wives (Northern Broadsides). Television work includes The Secret Files (BBC) and Here and Now (CBS)

Shakespeare’s Globe announces full casting for Morgan Lloyd Malcolm’s new play Emilia



Shakespeare’s Globe has announced the all-female cast for Morgan Lloyd Malcolm’s new play Emiliadirected by Nicole Charles. The play charts the life of Emilia Bassano, the poet, mother and feminist who is thought to have inspired the ‘Dark Lady’ in Shakespeare’s sonnets as well as the Emilia characters who appear in OthelloThe Two Noble KinsmenThe Winter’s Tale and The Comedy of Errors. Emilia continues to thread her way through each of the plays in which she appears this summer season, excepting Emilia the Abbess in The Comedy of Errors.

Nadia Albina will play Lady Katherine, returning to the Globe after appearing in Ellen McDougall’s Othello in the Sam Wanamaker Playhouse last year and Iqbal Khan’s Macbeth in 2016. Nadia’s other recent theatre work includes Macbeth (National Theatre) and Quiz (Chichester Festival Theatre). Television includes Marcella and Trauma (ITV).

Anna Andresen is Mary Sidney. Anna’s previous theatre work includes The Mousetrap (West End), The Frozen Scream (Birmingham Hippodrome) and The 39 Steps (Criterion Theatre). Television includes Silent Witness and Fortitude.

Shiloh Coke will play Lady Anne Clifford. Shiloh appeared in Misty at the Bush Theatre earlier this year and also starred in Phyllida Lloyd’s all-female Shakespeare Trilogy at the Donmar Warehouse.

Leah Harvey will play Emilia 1. Leah graduated from LAMDA in 2016, after which she starred in Phyllida Lloyd’s all-female Shakespeare Trilogy at the Donmar Warehouse. Film work includes Michael Winterbottom’s On the Road and Stephen Merchant’s Fighting With My Family.

Jenni Maitland will play Countess of Kent, returning to The Globe after appearing in John Dove’s In Extremis in 2007. Her other theatre credits include By Jeeves (Landor Theatre), Guys and Dolls(Cambridge Arts Theatre) and The Rivals (Southwark Playhouse).

Clare Perkins is Emilia 3. Clare is currently starring in Genesis Inc at Hampstead Theatre. Her other recent theatre work includes Daisy Pulls It Off (Park Theatre), Primetime (Royal Court/UK Tour) and Roundelay (Southwark Playhouse). Television credits include Death in Paradise (BBC) and Damned(Channel 4).

Carolyn Pickles is Lord Henry Carey. Carolyn is best known for multiple television roles, having appeared in the hit BBC series Broadchurch, as well as Vera and EastEnders. Carolyn’s recent theatre work includes Charles III (West End) and Beasts (Theatre 503). Films include Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows and The Imaginarium of Dr Parnassus.

Vinette Robinson is Emilia 2. Vinette is best known for her role as Nicola in the BBC television series The A-Word. She also won the Clarence Derwent Award for her role as Ophelia in Ian Rickson’s 2012 production of Hamlet at the Young Vic. Vinette’s other theatre work includes Albion (Almeida), Trout Stanley and Tender Napalm (Southwark Playhouse). Television work includes Delicious (Sky), Close to the Enemy (BBC) and Black Mirror (Netflix).

Sophie Russell is Lord Thomas Howard. Sophie’s recent theatre work includes The Prudes (Royal Court), Young Marx (Bridge Theatre) and Winnie and Wilbur (Birmingham Rep). Television includes Living in Fear (Sky). Film includes The Invisible Woman.

Sarah Seggari will play Lady Cordelia, also returning to The Globe after appearing in Matthew Dunster’s Much Ado About Nothing last summer.

Sophie Stone is Lady Margaret Clifford. Sophie’s recent theatre work includes Jubilee (Royal Exchange), The Government Inspector (Birmingham Rep) and Herons (Lyric Theatre Hammersmith). Television includes Shetland (BBC), The Crown (Netflix) and The Moonstone (BBC). Sophie won Best Actress at the 2013 Cinedeaf Festival for short film Retreat.

Charity Wakefield will play William Shakespeare, returning to the Globe stage after playing Desdemona in Othello in 2005. Charity is known for multiple television roles, having appeared in Wolf HallClose to the EnemyDoctor Who (BBC) and Bounty Hunters (Sky). Charity’s other theatre work includes SeminarThe Blackest Black (Hampstead Theatre) and Candida (Bath Theatre Royal).

Amanda Wilkin is Alphonso Lanier. Amanda returns to The Globe after appearing in the Globe to Globe tour of Hamlet, which travelled to 197 countries in 2014 and 2016. Her recent theatre work includes The Grinning Man (Trafalgar Studios), The 306:Day (National Theatre of Scotland) and La Ronde (Bunker Theatre).

The full cast includes: Nadia Albina, Anna Andresen, Shiloh Coke, Leah Harvey, Jenni Maitland, Clare Perkins, Carolyn Pickles, Vinette Robinson, Sophie Russell, Sarah Seggari, Sophie Stone, Charity Wakefield and Amanda Wilkin.

Kim Cattrall, Lena Headey and Noma Dumezweni star in new short film released by International Rescue Committee and Shakespeare’s Globe

Refugee Week

The International Rescue Committee and Shakespeare’s Globe have released a new short film to mark World Refugee Day. A unique performance of Shakespeare’s speech ‘The Strangers’ Case’ from The Book of Sir Thomas More, the film features refugees from Syria, Sierra Leone and South Sudan alongside renowned actors including Kim CattrallLena HeadeyNoma Dumezweni and Jamael Westman in an expression of unity with all those who have fled conflict overseas.

Filmed in the Globe’s iconic outdoor and indoor theatres, Sawsan Abou Zeinedin, Sana Kikhia, Rayan Azhari and Mohanad Hasb Alrsol Badr are joined by actors from stage and screen as they stand in solidarity with Shakespeare’s rallying cry for humanity, which is as relevant today as it was 400 years ago. The film will launch the Globe’s programming for Refugee Week (18th – 24th June) and will be screened across the site throughout the week.

The Book of Sir Thomas More was written and edited by a team of playwrights including Anthony Munday, Henry Chettle, Thomas Heywood, Thomas Dekker and William Shakespeare. Depicting More’s rise and fall, it includes a dramatization of the May Day riots of 1517, when citizens turned on their immigrant neighbours. Thomas More memorably confronts the rioters, condemning their ‘mountainish inhumanity’ and urging them to consider the ‘the strangers’ case’: the plight of London’s refugees.

David MilibandCEO of the International Rescue Committee, said: “Shakespeare knew that refugees needed help and so should we. In his time it was the Lombards fleeing their homes and communities. Today people are fleeing their homes and communities in Syria, Yemen and Myanmar. The people are different but the reasons are the same: To protect themselves and their loved ones from war, violence and persecution. And Shakespeare’s rallying cry for humanity is as relevant as ever. Now is the time to answer his cry and stand with refugees.”

Michelle TerryArtistic Director at the Globe, said: “If Shakespeare is our greatest humanist writer, then it is our humanitarian duty to respond to his own clarion call. ‘The Strangers’ Case’ is Thomas More’s sadly still relevant plea to the rioting masses as they attack and reject the “wretched strangers, Their babies at their backs and their poor luggage, Plodding to the ports and coasts for transportation.”

Where better than the embrace of our wooden O, or the warmth of our Sam Wanamaker Playhouse, in an organisation that was conceived of and created by Sam Wanamaker who himself sought refuge in this country after being blacklisted by his own, to tell these kind of stories. But ‘The Strangers’ Case’ isn’t a story; it’s a hostility which is real, ongoing, and which must be fought. I’m so pleased we’ve been able to partner with the IRC to bring to life Shakespeare’s appeal to our “mountainish inhumanity”, in a rallying cry for compassion and empathy which echoes from his century to ours.”

Sana, a refugee from Syria who appears in the film said: “I am presenting myself as a refugee to help remove the stigma. I want to let the world know that being a refugee is not a burden. Refugees are survivors and have overcome so many difficulties and war. We need to rethink the way we look at refugees. I am happy to be called a refugee and help the case.”

Shakespeare’s Globe announces Winter Season for 2018/19 in the Sam Wanamaker Playhouse

Shakespeare's Globe Winter Season for 2018/19
Shakespeare's Globe Winter Season for 2018/19

Shakespeare’s Globe Winter Season for 2018/19

Shakespeare’s Globe has announced  its Winter Season for 2018/19 in the Sam Wanamaker Playhouse. Featuring two pairings of plays by William Shakespeare and his celebrated counterpart, Christopher Marlowe, this call and response season opens on 7 November 2018. Throughout the season we are also inviting today’s artists to examine, rework and elaborate on these 400-year-old provocations with new work written in response to Shakespeare and Marlowe.

William Shakespeare’s Macbeth will be directed by Robert Hastie, opening the season as a timely reminder of the destruction that can result from the quest for power, and an examination of the evil forces that can take root in the imagination of a tyrant. Robert is the Artistic Director of Sheffield Theatres, where he has directed their critically acclaimed productions Julius CaesarOf Kith and Kinand The Wizard of Oz. Robert directed Michelle Terry in the titular role of Henry V at Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre (2016). He also directed Breaking the Code at Manchester’s Royal Exchange in the play’s first major revival for 30 years.

Opening on 1 DecemberChristopher Marlowe’s Doctor Faustus will be directed by Paulette Randall, and plays alongside Macbeth. The cautionary tale examines the very nature of human curiosity and our unparalleled thirst for knowledge. Paulette’s theatre credits include Fences starring Lenny Henry (Theatre Royal Bath, West End), Gem of the OceanBlues for Mr Charlie (Tricycle) and Frankie and Johnny in the Clair de Lune (Chichester Festival Theatre). Her screen credits include CasualtyThe Crouches and Holby City (BBC One). Paulette was associate director of the 2012 Olympics Opening Ceremony and was awarded an MBE for services to drama in 2015.

Dark Night of the Soul: a feminine response to the Faustian bargain opens on 29 December. The Faustian myth continues to fascinate and intrigue, but has been appropriated by the man, the male, the masculine, with little exploration or discovery of what it means for the woman, the female, the feminine, to stop at a crossroads and ‘sell her soul’. Jude Christian will direct an ensemble of female writers including Lily Bevan, Athena Stevens, Katie Hims, Amanda Wilkin, Lisa Hammond andRachael Spence. They will respond to the provocation, with the ultimate aim of creating a chorus of female voices asking: What would you sell your soul for? Jude Christian will be performing Nanjing, a piece about identity, dispossession, and the consequences of war, in the Playhouse this week as part of Refugee Week 2018.

Ralegh: The Treason Trial, edited and dramatised by Oliver Chris, will premiere in Winchester Great Hall, the location of the original trial 415 years ago, before playing in the Sam Wanamaker Playhouse. The production is a  verbatim account of what played out on that extraordinary November morning, compiled and edited from sources present at the trial itself. Oliver is an actor, writer and director best-known in the theatre for his roles in One Man, Two Guvnors (National Theatre, West End, Broadway), King Charles III (Almeida, West End, Broadway), and Twelfth Night (National Theatre).

The season continues with Marlowe’s Edward II and Shakespeare’s Richard II, examining ancestral relationships and notions of identity, sexuality, desire and power. Edward II plays from 7 February 2019. King Edward recalls his lover from banishment and sets in motion a chain of events that culminate in some of the most shocking scenes in early modern theatre. Marlowe’s portrayal of Edward and Gaveston is a rare depiction of a gay relationship on the early modern stage, and a frank exploration of the tension between private pleasures and public duty.

Richard II was hugely controversial when it was first written and performed, and it strikes us today with remarkable immediacy as Shakespeare asks us to consider the destiny that we might be shaping for our ‘scepter’d isle’. The production will open on 22 February and play during a period in which we will play our own part in defining history and becoming the shoulders on which future generations will stand, as the UK’s scheduled departure from the EU is due to take place on 29 March 2019.

The Read Not Dead series continues to shed new light on Shakespeare’s contemporaries, and this year includes Edward I (first printed 1593) by George Peele. The series will also bring to life The Little French Lawyer (first performed 1619 – 1623, first published 1647) by John Fletcher and Philip Massinger, and The Tragedy of Sir John van Olden Barnavelt (first performed 1619, first published 1883) by John Fletcher and Philip Massinger. Events will be taking place over the half term period, including storytelling and workshops of Macbeth and Henry V for families.

Opening 21 MarchAfter Edward is written by Tom Stuart. Edward II wanders on to the empty stage, bloodied and confused. He has no idea where he is, or how he got here, but he does have an ominous feeling that something is wrong. A daring new play written specifically for the Sam Wanamaker Playhouse in response to Christopher Marlowe’s Edward II, After Edward welcomes us into a chaotic world of pride and shame. Tom has appeared as an actor at Shakespeare’s Globe in many productions including The Broken Heart, The Changeling (2015), Romeo & Juliet (2009) and Much Ado About Nothing (2007). He performed in the Battersea Arts Centre’s production of Edward IIin 2008. His screen credits include Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy, Psychobitches (Sky Arts), and A Good Year. Tom has been working in film, television and theatre as an actor for 14 years. His first play I Am Not Myself These Days, an adaptation of Josh Kilmer-Purcell’s New York Times bestselling autobiography, was performed by Tom at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival (2015) and toured the UK in 2016.

Playing Shakespeare with Deutsche Bank celebrates its 14th year at the Globe Theatre. Throughout March 2019, Romeo & Juliet will be opening the doors to the next generation of audiences.

Advance Priority Booking: Wednesday 20 June

Friends Priority Booking: Monday 25 June

Public Booking: Monday 16 July

Download the brochure for the Winter Season 2018/19 here.

2018 Sam Wanamaker Award presented at Shakespeare’s Globe on 16th June

Thelma Holt
Thelma Holt

Thelma Holt

The 2018 Sam Wanamaker Award will be presented to British theatre producer Thelma Holt CBE by Shakespeare’s Globe Chief Executive, Neil Constable, and Director, Globe Education, Patrick Spottiswoode, in the Globe Theatre on Saturday 16 June. The award ceremony will follow the relaxed matinee performance of The Two Noble Kinsmen and will be coupled with ‘The Globe Remembers’: a roll call of those who have made a significant contribution to the work of Shakespeare’s Globe and who have sadly died in the last 12 months. This year’s commemorations include Sir Peter Hall CBE, with whom Thelma worked at the National Theatre.

Actor and Director, Sam Wanamaker, spent the final 23 years of his life tirelessly campaigning, advancing research into the original Globe and planning its reconstruction. The Sam Wanamaker Award was instituted by Shakespeare’s Globe in 1994 to celebrate work which has increased the understanding and enjoyment of Shakespeare and which has a similar quality to Sam’s own pioneering mission.

Neil Constable, Chief Executive, Shakespeare’s Globe explained, ‘This year’s award is given in recognition of Thelma Holt’s long-standing career in support of international cultural exchange, especially in producing and touring many award-winning Shakespeare productions both in English and in translation. She has also been a true friend to the Globe since the days when Sam Wanamaker first had a gleam in his eye to build a reconstructed Globe Theatre.’

Thelma Holt’s name is synonymous with theatre. Once an actress, now a producer, she belongs in that small group of legendary women – Lilian Baylis, Joan Littlewood and the agent Peggy Ramsay are others – who have transformed British theatre. Her energies are deployed in many directions, but Shakespeare’s Globe has held an important place in her affections from the earliest days of the project – ever since, as she has put it, ‘Sam got me like everyone else. He had the vision and that carried you along.’

On hearing that she would be the 2018 recipient, Thelma Holt CBE said, ‘The news that I was to receive the Sam Wanamaker Award made the sun come out in my world, even though it appeared to be raining heavily elsewhere. I and anyone else who was involved so many years ago remain proud of the work we did when a madman called Sam Wanamaker had a brilliant idea. 

‘Every obstacle that was put in his way was shot down in flames. However hard we may have worked on his behalf was nothing compared to what we received in return. Everything I learned with Sam I have continued to use in my own career and indeed now share with young people coming into the profession. 

‘On the road to achieving this magnificent venue (Shakespeare’s Globe), there were many near-disasters. All they ever meant for Sam was a huge rush of adrenalin as he went into battle. I and so many friends were proud indeed to be his foot-soldiers, and it is thrilling today to come to the Globe and see the great work that continues to be done to the lasting credit of the country that gave birth to William Shakespeare.’

Thelma Holt follows former illustrious recipients of the Award, the first of whom was Dr Rex Gibson, creator and editor of the Cambridge School Shakespeare; and include Janet Arnold for her pioneering research into Elizabethan clothing; Professor Stanley Wells, Shakespeare scholar and former Chairman of the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust; John Barton, founding member of the Royal Shakespeare Company; actor and director, Mark Rylance; and last year, to mark the Globe’s 20th anniversary, 25 volunteers who have each given over 20 years of service as Stewards at  Shakespeare’s Globe.

Thelma is a graduate of the RADA and co-founder of the Open Space Theatre. She became director of the Roundhouse in 1976 before joining Peter Hall at the National Theatre, where in 1987 she received the Olivier Award for Outstanding Achievement for her international work. Her many theatrical successes as a producer after leaving the National Theatre include some outstanding Shakespeare productions: The Merchant of Venice with Dustin Hoffman in London and New York (for Peter Hall); Hamlet, with Alan Rickman in the leading role and Much Ado About Nothing, with Janet McTeer and Mark Rylance (a production which marked the return of Shakespeare to Shaftesbury Avenue after a gap of 50 years).

As Cameron Mackintosh Professor of Contemporary Theatre at Oxford, Thelma became responsible for the university’s annual Shakespeare tour to Japan, which this year is Twelfth Night. She is an Emeritus Fellow of St Catherine’s College and became a Distinguished Friend of Oxford in 2006. As Associate Producer for the RSC she has, with HoriPro Inc, toured to Japan the RSC’s productions of Othello and A Midsummer Night’s Dream. Her RSC co-productions in the West End include the five Jacobean plays, The Taming of the Shrew and The Tamer Tamed and All’s Well That Ends Well. She is currently Associate Producer on Imperium. In Japan she co-produced with HoriPro Inc. The Merchant of Venice and Anjin – The English Samurai, both directed by Gregory Doran.

Thelma was producer for all of Yukio Ninagawa’s productions that were performed in the UK for a period of 30 years, including his final memorial production of Macbeth at the Barbican and Theatre Royal Plymouth in 2017. In recognition of her promotion of Japanese theatre, she was awarded the Order of the Rising Sun by the Emperor of Japan.

Shakespeare has featured heavily in Thelma’s career, and she has been a Shakespeare enthusiast since childhood. As she has said in an interview given to the Globe’s membership magazine, ‘It was Shakespeare who made me want to act and Shakespeare who made me want to produce.’

Shakespeare’s Globe announces full casting for Othello, directed by Claire van Kampen



Shakespeare’s Globe has announced the full casting for Othellodirected by Claire van Kampen, opening in The Globe on Friday 20 July.

Sheila Atim will play Emilia. Winner of an Olivier Award earlier this year for her role in Girl From The North Country (Old Vic, West End) Sheila is returning to Shakespeare’s Globe after making her professional debut on The Globe stage in Matthew Dunster’s The Lightning Child in 2013. Sheila’s other theatre work includes The Shakespeare Trilogy at The Donmar Warehouse, Les Blancs(National Theatre) and Volpone (RSC).

Catherine Bailey will play Bianca and Doge of Venice. Catherine appeared in the Globe’s productions of Julius CaesarThe Merchant of Venice and Dr Scroggy’s War in 2014. Other recent theatre work incudes King Lear (No 1 Tour) and The 39 Steps (West End). Television includes The Crown (Netflix), Strike: The Silkworm (BBC/HBO) and Mr Selfridge (ITV).

William Chubb will play Brabantio and Montano. William’s recent theatre credits include This House(National Theatre), Racing Demon (Theatre Royal Bath), Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are DeadKing Lear (Old Vic) and Lawrence After Arabia (Hampstead Theatre).

Steffan Donnelly will play Roderigo, returning to The Globe after appearing in Romeo and Juliet in 2015, A Midsummer Night’s Dream and Titus Andronicus in 2014. Steffan’s other recent theatre work includes My Body Welsh (Invertigo) and Pilgrims (HighTide/Theatre Clwd/Yard), for which he was nominated for an Offie. Television work includes The Innocents (Netflix) and Shakespeare Uncovered(BBC).

André Holland will play Othello. André is best known for his roles in Academy Award-winning films Moonlight and Selma. The multi-award-winning actor’s other screen credits include 42 and The Knick. Theatre credits include Jitney (Broadway), Blue Door (Playwrights Horizons), Wig Out (Vineyard Theatre), The Brother / Sister Plays (Public Theatre) and All’s Well That Ends Well (Shakespeare in the Park).

Micah Loubon is Chorus. Micah’s past theatre credits include Romeo and Juliet and The Taming of the Shrew, as part of Intermission Youth Theatre.

Ira Mandela Siobhan also joins as Chorus. Ira returns to The Globe after playing Posthumus in Matthew Dunster’s Imogen in 2014. Other recent theatre credits include The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe (West Yorkshire Playhouse) and Mosquitoes (National Theatre).

Aaron Pierre will play Cassio. Aaron is best known for his role as Dev-Em in SyFy’s hit series Krypton. His further television credits include Jez Butterworth’s Britannia (Sky Atlantic), The A Word  (BBC) and Prime Suspect 1973 (ITV). Aaron’s theatre credits whilst training include Of Mice and MenCoriolanusPlatonov and The Virtuoso (LAMDA).

Mark Rylance will play Iago. Mark has just starred in the Globe’s Tony Award-nominated production of Farinelli and the King on Broadway (originally produced under Dominic Dromgoole’s tenure as Artistic Director). He was the founding Artistic Director of the Globe, acting for ten years between 1996 – 2005, playing a multitude of roles including the Countess Olivia in Twelfth Night and Richard in Richard III (Shakespeare’s Globe, West End, Broadway). Further stage credits include Jerusalem (Royal Court, West End) and Boeing-Boeing (West End, Broadway). His screen credits include Wolf Hall, Dunkirk, The BFG and Bridge of Spies.

Clemmie Sveaas is Chorus. As a dancer and actress, she has performed regularly at the Royal Opera House, Royal Ballet and is a member of New Movement Collective. She has danced with leading companies such as Phoenix Dance Theatre and Rambert. Clemmie’s recent theatre credits include Pinocchio (National Theatre), Les Enfants Terribles (Barbican Theatre) and Macbeth (Young Vic).

Badria Timimi will play Lodovica. She has most recently appeared on screen in Carnival Row(Amazon), with other television credits including Father Brown (BBC), EastEnders (BBC) and Unforgotten (ITV). Her film credits include PusherSyriana and Tim Burton’s feature film Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children. Badria’s recent theatre work includes My Brilliant Friend(Rose Theatre Kingston), Told FromThe Inside (Royal Court) and Feed the Beast (Birmingham Rep).

Jessica Warbeck will play Desdemona. She played Hero in the Globe’s touring production of Much Ado About Nothing in 2015 and appeared in Othello (2015). Her other recent theatre work includes One Man Two Guvnors (Eastbourne Theatres) and Oliver Twist (European Tour).