GLOBE: Life In Shakespeare's London

GLOBE: Life In Shakespeare's London

CATHARINE ARNOLD    Book Number: 91466    Product format: Paperback

The life of Britain's greatest dramatist was inextricably linked with the history of London. Together the great writer and the great city came of age and confronted triumph and tragedy. Triumph came when Shakespeare's company, the Chamberlain's Men, opened the Globe Playhouse on Bankside in 1599 under the patronage of the Queen herself. Tragedy came 14 years later when it was burned to the ground. Had Guy Fawkes and his fellow plotters succeeded in November 1605, King James I and his Court would have been blown to kingdom come during the State Opening of Parliament. These extraordinary characters and events not only inspired Shakespeare and his fellow playwrights but were reflected in his work. This special book takes the reader on a virtual tour through Shakespeare's life and work and the achievements of his exceptional fellow authors, actors and pioneers of the theatre. By focussing on the early life and career of James Burbage, father of the more famous Richard and builder of the first theatre in London, the author sets the stage for Shakespeare's entrance. Between the years 1576 and 1642, the year Parliament banned the staging of plays, theatre became England's principal artform, with Shakespeare and his rivals Christopher Marlowe, Ben Jonson, Beaumont and Fletcher, John Webster and Thomas Middleton. 'Whether fleet afoot and smooth of cheek, or built like a bear with a commanding bellow, whether beautifully dressed in clothes purloined from an aristocratic master, or wrapped in a cloak which masked a stained doublet laddered hose, the resourceful individual with the gift of the gab gravitated to the profession most associated with outsiders and thieves. As Hamlet observes, if all else fails there is always the theatre.' We learn about Burbage who carried timbers across the Thames to build the Globe among the bear-gardens and brothels of Bankside and how acting came of age as a trade during the 1570s and 1580s with touring players. The rebuilt Globe continued to stand as a monument to Shakespeare's genius until 1642 when it was destroyed on the orders of Oliver Cromwell. And finally we learn how 300 years later the Globe opened once more to great acclaim. 312 page paperback.
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ISBN 9781471162732
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from Helen Musson on 10/05/2022