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Shakespeare's Globe Announces Socially Distanced Open-Air Film Screenings and The Comedy Store Players

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The open-air venue has implemented COVID-19 safety measures, meeting Government guidelines.

The Globe Theatre is to open 13 - 15 November, for a weekend of socially distanced, open-air film screenings. Audiences are invited to wrap-up warm for Shakespeare on Screen; a special screening of eight films inspired by Shakespeare, from the unique Playhouse that inspired him. Films include The Lion King, West Side Story, and Baz Luhrmann's Romeo + Juliet. On 12 November, The Comedy Store Players will perform on the Globe stage for a socially distanced open-air performance, filled with sketches, songs, and their trademark improvised 'Shakespeare playlet'. For the last 22 years, the ad-lib ensemble has brought its rambunctious comedy to the Globe stage and this year, despite all the odds, will be no different.

The capacity of the Globe has been dramatically reduced, from its usual 1,500, to 408 for The Comedy Store Players and 218 for Shakespeare on Screen. The Yard will be transformed with cabaret style tables and chairs for The Comedy Store Players, with space for 40 audience members, and 34 deckchairs will be laid out for Shakespeare on Screen. Both events are part of pilot programming to prepare for a full-scale opening of the theatre in Spring 2021. The Globe intends to cover its costs with these socially distanced events.

The Shakespeare on Screen films showing in The Globe Theatre are as follows:

Friday 13 November: Twelfth Night and Shakespeare in Love

Twelfth Night: The Globe's award-winning, all-male Original Practices production of Shakespeare's fast-paced comedy about mistaken identities, unrequited romance and practical jokes. The company includes Johnny Flynn, Stephen Fry and Mark Rylance.

Shakespeare in Love: Tom Stoppard's romantic period drama depicts a fictional love affair between William Shakespeare (Joseph Fiennes) and aspiring actor Viola de Lesseps (Gwyneth Paltrow) who, disguised as a man, auditions for his new play, which would later become Romeo and Juliet.

Saturday 14 November: Gnomeo & Juliet, West Side Story, and Baz Luhrmann's Romeo + Juliet

Gnomeo & Juliet: In the Stratford-Upon-Avon gardens of two elderly neighbours, two sets of gnomes - the Red hats and the Blue hats - share in their owners' feud. This animated take on Romeo and Juliet has songs by Sir Elton John and voices include James McAvoy, Emily Blunt, Michael Caine and Maggie Smith.

West Side Story: This 1961 film adaptation of the Broadway musical inspired by Romeo and Juliet is the most Oscar awarded musical film of all time. The Montagues and Capulets become the Jets and Sharks, two warring New York City gangs, and our star-crossed lovers are Tony and Maria.

Romeo + Juliet: Baz Luhrmann's bold take on Shakespeare's romantic tragedy is set in modern-day Verona Beach. Leonardo DiCaprio and Claire Danes play the titular lovers caught between two feuding mafia empires.

Sunday 15 November: The Lion King, Kiss Me Kate, and Much Ado About Nothing

The Lion King: Disney's answer to Hamlet. The 1994 animated classic features songs by Sir Elton John and the voices of Rowan Atkinson, James Earl Jones, Whoopi Goldberg and Jeremy Irons. Follow young lion Simba on his adventures from cub to King of Pride Rock.

Kiss Me Kate: 1953 film adaptation of the stage musical. It tells the story of two actors, who were once married, taking on the roles of Katherine and her suitor Petruchio in a Broadway-bound musical version of Shakespeare's The Taming of the Shrew. Featuring well-loved songs by Cole Porter including 'Too Darn Hot'.

Much Ado About Nothing: Kenneth Branagh's film adaptation of one of Shakespeare's best-loved comedies about deception, misunderstandings and secret loves. The cast includes Kenneth Branagh as Benedick and Emma Thompson as Beatrice as well as Kate Beckinsale, Keanu Reeves and Denzel Washington.

The Globe has been welcoming visitors for guided tours of the theatre. This October half-term (25 - 31 October) the Globe will host Family Workshops and the brand-new 'Story Tour' for families on-site, including A Midsummer Night's Dream, Macbeth and The Tempest, all for 5 - 12-year olds. There are also online events for families over the halfterm period.

The open-air venue has implemented COVID-19 safety measures, meeting Government guidelines, including strict social-distancing, hand-sanitising stations, and regular deep-cleaning.


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