Soon after the staging began at the DUMBO neighborhood space, on Dec. 20, word quickly traveled that the Globe Measure surpassed many another Shakespeare to reach Gotham in many years. The show soon became a hot ticket. The difficulty in getting to St. Ann's during the three-day transit strike only increased audience demand. The Globe Measure is an "original practices" production, using clothing, music, dance and setting that would have been possible in the Globe of 1599. John Dove is the director, or as the Globe terms it, "master of play." Actors play period instruments with deft skill, and dress and make themselves up in full view as the audience files in. Much of the lighting is provided by numerous chandeliers.
The cast, which is all-male, is headed by Globe artistic director Mark Rylance as Vincentio, Duke of Vienna. Many critics commented upon his inventive, insightful interpretation of the difficult character, who is often played as a manipulative sphinx. Rylance performed him as a dithering leader, troubled by his conscience and forever unsure of the wisdom of his methods or next move.
Also featured are Liam Brennan, Bill Stewart, David Sturzaker, Colin Hurley, Terry McGinity, Roger Watkins, Thomas Padden, Peter Shorey, Roger Watkins, Roger McKern, Roger McKern, John Dougall, Roger Watkins, Thomas Padden, Roger McKern, David Hartley, Edward Hogg, Michael Brown, David Hartley, Michael Brown and Peter Shorey.
The Brooklyn stay followed a U.S. tour which took the production to the Guthrie Theatre in Minneapolis (Oct. 26-Nov. 6); Los Angeles (Nov. 9-26); Philadelphia (Nov. 30-Dec. 4); and Pittsburgh (Dec. 6-18).
The Globe previously toured the U.S with Twelfth Night in 2003.