New Globe Artistic Director Plans Roman Season

News   New Globe Artistic Director Plans Roman Season For the first season under new artistic director Dominic Dromgoole, Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre has announced a Roman theme for the open air theatre’s 2006 program.

Under the title “The Edges of Rome,” the Globe’s season will present four Shakespeare plays: Coriolanus, Titus Andronicus, Antony and Cleopatra and The Comedy of Errors.

There will also be two new plays, Under the Black Flag by Simon Bent and Howard Brenton’s In Extremis.

Speaking at the season’s launch, Dromgoole confirmed that in the future The Globe will regularly commission new work. The artistic director also said there would be less emphasis on the so-called “original practices” style of staging plays. The practice, a feature of founding artistic director Mark Rylance’s previous regime, sought to re-create the experience of Shakespearean audiences. However, under Dromgoole, there will be no Shakespearean modern-dress productions. “There won’t be any jeeps or flak jackets,” he said.

The season’s six plays will run in repertory, kicking off with Coriolanus on May 5, which Dromgoole will direct. Titus Andronicus, directed by Lucy Bailey, will begin previews May 20. Antony and Cleopatra, also directed by Dromgoole, will open on June 25 with The Comedy of Errors, directed by Chris Luscombe, running from July 25.

New play Under the Black Flag by Bent (Accomplices, The Associate) is described as “a wild tale of high seas and low politics” and “is set around the historical pirate republic of Rabat following the execution of Charles I.” The play is helmed by Roxana Silbert. The second world premiere, Brenton’s In Extremis, The story of Apelard and Heloise, begins previews Aug. 27 and is set in 12th-century France, exploring “the relationship between humanism and fundamentalism, faith and power.”

Brenton’s previous plays include Paul, which received its world premiere at the National Theatre last year, and the violent and controversial The Romans in Britain, for which no place has been found in the Globe’s Roman season.