Tuesday, 16 August 2011

The Globe

No trip to the UK would be complete with out some form of Shakespeare.  We were fortunate enough to reserve both a tour of the Globe Theater and a performance of As You Like It on Wednesday, August 3rd.  Our tour guide gave us an excellent sense of the history of the Globe and the surrounding area, along with the evolving perception of theater, actors, and patrons since the time of Shakespeare.  As our tickets that evening were for standing down in "The Yard" we would have been known as Penny Stinkers back in the day.  One because our standing rights would have cost only a penny, and Stinkers, because, well, a yearly bath was considered the norm at the time.  We were shocked to hear that 1000 people would have been packed like sardines into the yard in the past (resulting in people often having to be "peeled apart" after performances) - now they only sell tickets to 700 so we (thankfully) had plenty of elbow room.

From our tour of the theater, it was onto some added extras - an Elizabethan dressing demonstration (Fay served as an excellent guinea pig) followed by a sword fighting demo.

On go the garters!

Next the corset...

Lacing up!

Nice and tight!

Now the skirt...

 ...and the coat.

The final touches!

Ta-da! Fay is ready for the stage!
After a break for some dinner, we headed back to the theater for As You Like It.  We all managed to get right up to the stage, where we had an excellent view of the actors.  It was a fantastic show and we were fortunate to have a lovely rain-free evening in the open-top theater.

Most of the crew inside the theater
Lesley and Vishal in front of the stage

Students in the yard and the seats above

Following the show, we had a beautiful view of the Millennium bridge and the lights of the city...

The Millennium bridge crossing the Thames river

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