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Shakespeare's Globe, London

Shakespeare's Globe is a theatre complex located along the River Thames in London’s borough of Southwalk. The theatre itself is a reconstruction of the original Globe Theatre, a playhouse built in 1599 and associated with the famous English playwright William Shakespeare. American actor and director Sam Wanamaker founded the current theatre complex, which opened in 1997.

Shakespeare's Globe is about 230 metres (750 feet) from the original Globe Theatre. A fire destroyed the original theatre in 1613 and later rebuilt in 1614 but eventually demolished in 1644. The London reconstruction has inspired a number of other Shakespeare's Globe theatres around the world. Besides holding regular performances throughout the year, Shakespeare's Globe also welcomes visitors for guided tours.

Shakespeare's Globe by Txllxt TxllxT


Shakespeare's Globe is a faithful reconstruction and considered quite realistic but an approximation of the original theatre built in 1599 based on available evidence. The theatre is a timber-framed building constructed entirely from English oak and uses mortise and tenon joints to connect the pieces of wood. For practical reasons, the modern building incorporates some features of the 1614 rebuilding such as the external staircases. Furthermore, Shakespeare's Globe can accommodate only 1,400 people compared to the original 3,000 to meet modern safety requirements.

See & Do

Like the original Globe Theatre, the modern Shakespeare's Globe has a thrust stage that projects into a large circular yard. Three levels of seating arranged in an upward slope surround the stage. The seats have simple oak benches and the pit has a concrete floor compared to the original theatre where strewn rush covered the ground. The backstage support areas (for the actors, musicians and stage crew) connect to a modern day lobby, visitor centre, gift shop and restaurant.

Inside Shakespeare's Globe by Sue Sandy

Adjacent to Shakespeare’s Globe is a smaller indoor theatre named the Sam Wanamaker Playhouse, modelled after an early 17th century Jacobean-era theatre. The theatre has an open-air ceiling and for this reason not in use for performances during the winter months. Therefore, performances in winter are located at the indoor theatre. Near the corner is the Sackler Studios, which functions as an educational and rehearsal studio.

The stage by Toby

Performances at the main theatre usually run from May to the first week of October and the theatre during winter used mainly for educational purposes. Performances include Shakespeare as well non-Shakespeare productions with each performance usually lasting between 2 1/2 and 3 hours including intermission. Performances at the indoor theatre are mainly non-Shakespeare productions including musicals.

Held throughout the year, the Globe Exhibition & Tour gives visitors an opportunity to tour Shakespeare’s Globe and learn about this exceptional building. You will also get to learn more about the life and works of England’s famous playwright William Shakespeare. The guided tour departs every 30 minutes and is in English with complimentary information sheets available in various languages including German, French, Italian, Spanish, Russian, Chinese and Japanese.

Visiting Shakespeare's Globe

There are daily performances throughout most weeks with one or two performances a day with the afternoon session generally starting at 2:00 p.m. and evening session at 7:30 p.m. You can purchase tickets to the performances at the box office (opens daily from 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.) or online at the official Shakespeare’s Globe website. Globe Exhibition & Tour opens daily from 9:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. and you can purchase tickets from the admission desk on the day.

Several London Underground stations are within walking distance from Shakespeare’s Globe. Blackfriars Station and Mansion House Station (both serving the District and Circle Lines) are about 10 minutes walking distance. London Bridge Station (serving the Northern and Jubilee Lines), Southwark Station (serving the Jubilee Line) and St Paul's Station (serving the Central Line) are about 15 minutes from Shakespeare’s Globe.

Shakespeare's Globe on the Map

New Globe Walk, London, SE1, UK

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