The Globe has announced its 2010 season which has the theme ‘Kings and Rogues’. Artistic Director Dominic Dromgoole says:
Shakespeare – something of a king and much of a rogue himself – understood that the world needs rogues, just as it needs kings. It needs the wildness, warmth and virtue of rogues, to balance against the paranoia, greed and violence of kings; just as it needs the strength of kings, to counteract the confusion of rogues.
This season we look at some of Shakespeare’s most regal rogues and some of his most roguish kings. Lord of all misrule is Falstaff, celebrated in three of our plays. The two parts of Henry IV are close to being Shakespeare’s greatest achievement, masterpieces of story-telling and realism, which encompass all of England’s past, present and future in their journey from pub to palace, from Cotswold orchard to blood-stained battlefield. The Merry Wives of Windsor, a revival of our great hit of 2008, celebrates Falstaff in a more domesticated environment, joyously satirising the middle class mores of Windsor.
The two Henry IV plays are premieres at the new Globe, as is Henry VIII, a great blend of pageantry and real-politik, written at the end of Shakespeare’s career, and showing all his formidable understanding of the passions and pettiness of those in power.
We are pairing this with a new play from Howard Brenton, one of our greatest dramatists, whose In Extremis was such a delight here. His play takes a fresh look at that evergreen female icon – Anne Boleyn.
We are opening the season with Macbeth, Shakespeare’s most terrifying portrait of humanity gone sour. And the season will finish with Bedlam, a play by one of our finest young writers, Nell Leyshon, which dives into the great gin epidemic of the eighteenth century. Please do also catch one or both of our tours either on their brief visits to the Globe, or on their travels.
And what better place than the Globe to celebrate both kings and rogues. Our building continues to embrace the most democratic audience in the world; the local Southwark school kid who has acted on stage, beside the elderly South Korean who has dreamt of it all her life; the thief beside the judge; the bishop beside the punk; each a rogue and a king in their own way. All held in the wooden embrace of the Globe.
Please come and join them.
Booking opens on 15 February 2010. Find all the details at Shakespeare’s Globe 2010 Theatre Season.