Presented under the umbrella title Justice and Mercy with plays that will probe the strengths and weaknesses of judicial law and the various tugs-of-war between family, state, religion, love, sex and duty that have defined human morality for centuries, it will include Dromgoole himself directing Measure for Measure, as well as new plays by Helen Edmundson and Jessica Sale and a contemporary adaptation of The Oresteia.
The Shakespeares will also include The Merchant of Venice, As You Like It and Richard II, a new touring production of King John, plus two Chinese Shakespeares — Richard III in Madarin and Macbeth in Cantonese.
The Merchant of Venice, which begins performances April 23 prior to an official opening April 30 for a run in rep through June 7, will be directed by Jonathan Munby, who this year is directing Antony and Cleopatra at the Globe.
As You Like It, which begins performances May 15 prior to an official opening May 20 for a run in rep through Sept. 5, will be directed by Blanche McIntyre, who made her Globe debut this year directing The Comedy of Errors.
Measure for Measure, which begins performances June 20 prior to an official opening July 1 for a run in rep through Oct. 17, will be directed by Dromgoole, whose recent productions at the Globe include Julius Caesar, The Duchess of Malfi and Gabriel. Richard II, which begins performances July 11 prior to an official opening July 22 for a run in rep through Oct. 18, will be directed by Simon Godwin, who is soon to direct Ralph Fiennes in Shaw's Man and Superman at the Natonal Theatre.
King John, which will run at the Globe June 1-28, is directed by James Dacre, and will include visits to the Holy Sepulchre Church in Northampton and Temple Church in London, in celebration of the 800th anniversary of the Magna Carta.
The Chinese Shakespeare productions of Richard III (presented by the National Theatre of China) and Macbeth (presented by Hong Kong's Tang Shu-wing Theatre Studio) will play July 20-25 and Aug. 17-23, respectively.
The new writing program will launch with Helen Edmundson's The Heresy of Love, beginning performances July 31 prior to an official opening Aug. 5, for a run through Sept. 5. This telling of the life of seventeenth-century Mexican nun and playwright Juana Inés de la Cruz premiered at the RSC in 2012.
Adele Thomas will direct a contemporary distillation of all three plays from Aeschylus's Oresteia, beginning performances Aug. 29 prior to an official opening Sept. 2, for a run in rep through Oct. 16. Documenting the bitter cycle of violent retribution that afflicts the House of Atreus as a consequence of Agamemnon's sacrifice of his daughter Iphigenia, the Oresteia dramatizes the shift away from the 'natural law' of the individual blood vendetta and towards a self-governing polis founded on principles of fair trial and punishment.
Finally, Jessica Sawle, whose plays Thomas Tallis and Blue Stockings have been seen at the Globe, will premiere Nell Gwynn, beginning performances Sept. 19 prior to an official opening Sept. 24 for a run through Oct. 17. The play revolves around life in London theatre during the Restoration, charting the rise of brilliant wit and charmer Nell Gwynn – from lowly satsuma-seller in the pit, to leading actress on the stage, to King’s escort in the Royal Box.
Priority booking for friends and patrons of the theatre opens Jan. 13, with public booking from Feb. 9. To book tickets, contact the box office on 020 7401 9919 or visit www.shakespearesglobe.com.