Shakespeare's Globe Archive

Theatres, Players & Performance

Explore two decades of pioneering theatrical experiment from the archives of Shakespeare's Globe.

Renowned worldwide for the iconic reconstruction of the original Globe Theatre, Shakespeare’s Globe celebrates William Shakespeare through the power of performance to make his work accessible to all. From architectural plans to costume designs, prompt books and programmes, the digitised archive of Shakespeare’s Globe offers researchers a comprehensive insight into performance practice in this unique theatre space.

Documenting over 200 productions from 1997-2016, this digital collection is a critical resource for the study of Shakespeare, theatre, cultural history and early-modern literature.

Key Data

Period Covered

  • 1997-2016

Highlights

  • From inception to completion, track the journey of Sam Wanamaker’s dream to reconstruct the Globe through architectural plans, photographs and research.
  • Prompt Books and Wardrobe Notes for Original Practice performances.
  • Early-modern and contemporary musical scores, including compositions by the award-winning composer Claire van Kampen.
  • Research Bulletins document discoveries about performance at Shakespeare’s Globe.
  • Oral Histories offer reminiscences on the genesis of the reconstructed Globe.
  • Materials on the Globe to Globe programme reveal how Shakespeare can be interpreted in different cultures.
  • Explore how plays were marketed, publicised and contextualised to audiences with publicity and programmes.
  • Front of House Show Reports detail audience behaviour and response.
  • Video interviews and essays from key figures, such as Patrick Spottiswoode, Director of Globe Education, provide contextualisation for archival materials.

Source Archive

  • Shakespeare’s Globe Archive

Material Types

  • Prompt books
  • Wardrobe notes & jottings
  • Programmes
  • Architectural material
  • Show reports
  • Posters
  • Performance photographs
  • Globe research
  • Music archive
  • Props
  • Oral histories

Editorial Board

  • Susan Bennett, University of Calgary
  • Christie Carson, University of London
  • Ralph Cohen, Mary Baldwin College
  • Andrew Gurr, University of Reading
  • Farah Karim-Cooper, Shakespeare's Globe
  • Stephen Purcell, University of Warwick
  • Will Tosh, Shakespeare's Globe

Subjects

  • Theatre Studies
  • English Literature
  • Performance
  • Shakespeare Studies
  • Early Modern Literature
  • Cultural History

Key Features

  • Contextual essays
  • Video interviews
  • Chronology