In October, Elizabethan theatre is coming to life in Perth. Literally.
Following a successful tour in Melbourne and Sydney, Pop-up Globe, the world’s first full-scale replica of Shakespeare’s 1614 London theatre, Globe, comes west. The three-storey, 16-sided pop-up theatre with its onion-domed roof will be constructed outside of Crown Perth and play host to Shakespearean masterpieces: A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Measure for Measure, Twelfth Night and Hamlet. Each production features elaborate sets, stunning costumes, special effects and litres of blood.
“Pop-up Globe is a time capsule that takes you back 350 years,” says Tobias Grant, executive producer of Pop-up Globe. “You would think they wouldn’t have had the tools in the past to create special effects, but they knew how to make people disappear in a puff of smoke, fly and create thunder and lightning.”
The 900-capacity theatre was built in Auckland, New Zealand in 2016 after founder and artistic director, Dr Miles Gregory decided to celebrate the 400th anniversary of Shakespeare’s death by bringing the theatre to life. The design is based on the second Globe built in London (the original burnt down in 1613) and ensures every member of the audience is no more than 15 metres from the stage.
“The theatre is round and all of the lights are on throughout the play, so the audience can see everyone,” says Grant. “They [the audience] are the last member of the cast, so each performance is different as it depends on how they respond. It is a giant production to take on tour, but part of the fun of it is how outrageous and huge the production is.”
Pop-up Globe is at Crown Perth and its six-week season starts October 9. Tickets start from $29 and are available online.