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Globe Theatre Facts

Picture of the Globe Theatre

Picture of the Globe Theatre

Iinteresting, important and even little known facts about the Globe theater.

  • Trivia Fact 1 - The Globe Theater had a 1500 plus audience capacity. Up to 3000 people would flock to the theatre and its grounds

  • Trivia Fact 2 - There was no heating in the Globe theatre. Plays were performed in the summer months and transferred to the indoor playhouses during the winter
  • Trivia Fact 3 - The Globe was built in a similar style to the Coliseum, but on a smaller scale - other Elizabethan Theatres followed this style of architecture - they were called amphitheatres.
  • Trivia Fact 4 - Elizabethan theatres were also used for bear baiting, gambling and for immoral purposes
  • Trivia Fact 5 - Elizabethan theatres attracted huge crowds - up to 3000 people
  • Trivia Fact 6 - Shakespeare and his company built TWO Globe Theatres.
  • Trivia Fact 7 - The Globe theatre was built by a carpenter called Peter Smith together with his workforce. They started building in 1597 and it was finished in 1598
  • Trivia Fact 8 - Many Londoners were strict Protestants - Puritans in fact, who abhorred the theatres and many of the people they attracted and in 1596 London's authorities banned the public presentation of plays and all theatres within the city limits of London. All theaters located in the City were forced to move to the South side of the River Thames
  • Trivia Fact 9 - At the start of the play after collecting money from the audience the admission collectors put the boxes in a room backstage - the box office
  • Trivia Fact 10 - All theaters located in the City were forced to move to the South side of the River Thames leading to the building of the Globe theatre
  • Trivia Fact 11 - Music was an extra effect added in the 1600's. The musicians would also reside in the Lords rooms
  • Trivia Fact 12 - Advertising - Flags were erected on the day of the performance which sometimes displayed a picture advertising the next play to be performed.
  • Trivia Fact 13 - Colour coding was used to advertise the type of play to be performed - a black flag meant a tragedy , white a comedy and red a history.
  • Trivia Fact 14 - A trumpet was sounded to announce to people that the play was about to begin at the Globe Theatre in order for people to take their final places.
  • Trivia Fact 15 - During the height of the summer the groundlings were also referred to as ' stinkards ' for obvious reasons
  • Trivia Fact 16 - The Globe was built by carpenter Peter Smith and his workers and was the most magnificent theater that London had ever seen. It was built between 1597 -1598.
  • Trivia Fact 17 - In Shakespeare’s time copyright did not exist. Rival theater companies would send their members to attend plays to produce unauthorised copies of plays - notes were made and copied as quickly as possible.
  • Trivia Fact 18 - The Globe would have particularly attracted young people and the were many complaints of apprentices avoiding work in order to go to the theater.
  • Trivia Fact 19 - A crest displaying Hercules bearing the globe on his shoulders together with the motto "Totus mundus agit histrionem" ( the whole world is a playhouse ) was displayed above the main entrance of the Globe Theater. This phrase was slightly re-worded in the William Shakespeare play As You Like It - "All the world’s a stage" which was performed at the Globe Theater.
  • Trivia Fact 20 - Special effects at the Globe were also a spectacular addition at the theater allowing for smoke effects, the firing of a real canon, fireworks (for dramatic battle scenes) and spectacular 'flying' entrances from the rigging in the 'heavens'.
  • Trivia Fact 21 - In just two weeks Elizabethan theaters could often present “eleven performances of ten different plays”.
  • Trivia Fact 22 - There were no actresses. Female characters had to be played by young boys. The acting profession was not a credible one and it was unthinkable that any woman would appear in a play.
  • Trivia Fact 23 - Many of the boy actors died of poisoning due to the vast quantities of lead in their make-up
  • Trivia Fact 24 - Shakespeare's first biographer, Nicholas Rowe, referred to a role performed by William Shakespeare at the Globe theatre as "the Ghost in his own Hamlet" in which he was was "the top of his performance".
  • Trivia Fact 25 - Published plays required a licence, which provided a form of censorship by the Elizabethan state.
  • Trivia Fact 26 - Fire at the Globe Theatre broke out in June 29 1613
  • Trivia Fact 27 - The second Globe Theatre was built shortly after in 1614
  • Trivia Fact 28 - The Puritans ended the Globe Theatre. In 1642 the Puritan Parliament issued an ordinance suppressing all stage plays. The Puritans demolish the Globe Theatre in 1644.
  • Trivia Fact 29 - All theaters located in the City were forced to move to the South side of the River Thames
  • Trivia Fact 30 - The site of the old Globe theatre was rediscovered in the 20th century and a reconstruction of a New Globe Theatre has been built near the spot.
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