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The importance of the globe theater in shakespeares career

You can find out more about Shakespeare's life in our Exhibition and with our online fact sheets.

  • Indoor Theatres Did you know many of Shakespeare's plays were written for indoor theatres?
  • Six men became the joint owners of the Globe Theatre, the largest stakes were put up by the Burbage brothers;
  • Learn about how they were different to outdoor playhouses, who acted in them and more with this Indoor Theatres fact sheet;
  • This preface also indicates that Shakespeare was by then making important friends;
  • Learn about the people who wrote plays and what they were about in this Writing Plays fact sheet.

Everyone thinks they know who Shakespeare was. William Shakespeare was a professional actor and playwright from Stratford-Upon-Avon.

  1. Find out what the city was like and it's major landmarks in this London fact sheet.
  2. Learn about how they were different to outdoor playhouses, who acted in them and more with this Indoor Theatres fact sheet.
  3. Discover more about these very different theatres and the audiences they attracted in this Playhouses fact sheet. Learn when and where Shakespeare was born, and about more his life in this William Shakespeare fact sheet.

Whatever we think about him as a writer, he was principally a man of the theatre: He acted in plays by other playwrights and, as a shareholder in the Globe he profited from every aspect of the playmaking business. This made him rich, and he is recorded as being a careful and conservative investor. Shakespeare was born in 1564.

  • View Writing Plays Going to the theatre was a popular pastime in Shakespeare's day;
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  • He died in Stratford in 1616.

His father was a glover and later an alderman. He was educated at the local grammar school, gaining a strong grounding in Latin and rhetoric, ideal skills for accessing classical source material for plays and writing dramatic dialogue.

He married young, becoming a father at the age of eighteen; as such there were many things binding him to Stratford — this makes it all the more remarkable that he chose a career far away in the unpredictable and disreputable London theatres.

The Globe Theatre is probably the most important structure in Shakespeare's dramatic career.

However, Shakespeare remained rooted in Stratford, buying property and investing locally. His plays contain many allusions to Warwickshire dialogue, people and places.

He died in Stratford in 1616. The theatres were new, controversial and hugely popular but were attacked by churchmen as immoral and dangerous.

Banned from the City of London, they were built outside the city in areas called liberties. Writing Shakespeare quickly staked a claim as a leading writer with plays such as Henry VI and the gory Titus Andronicus.

Early playwrights were almost exclusively university-educated - the first published reference to Shakespeare attacks him as an actor arrogant enough to presume himself a playwright. His genius for wordplay, dramatic dialogue and characterisation was born from adapting and rewriting material from novels, histories, classical myth and older plays.

  • View London London was the biggest and richest city in England and was the home of the first permanent playhouses;
  • Learn about when and how the current Globe was built and more in this Globe fact sheet;
  • Banned from the City of London, they were built outside the city in areas called liberties;
  • The theatre is of course synonymous with the great Elizabethan playwright William Shakespeare;
  • View London London was the biggest and richest city in England and was the home of the first permanent playhouses;
  • Globe Theatre, copperplate engraving.

Shakespeare wrote for the same company for most of his professional life, meaning that roles such as Hamlet and King Lear would have been written for Richard Burbage, clown roles for Will Kemp and, later, Robert Armin. Legacy Shakespeare worked hard to feed a local, loyal popular audience, as well as his royal and aristocratic patrons.

  1. Everyone thinks they know who Shakespeare was.
  2. View London London was the biggest and richest city in England and was the home of the first permanent playhouses. The theatres were new, controversial and hugely popular but were attacked by churchmen as immoral and dangerous.
  3. Learn about how they were different to outdoor playhouses, who acted in them and more with this Indoor Theatres fact sheet.

Unfortunately, only a small number of the plays performed between 1576, when the first London theatre was opened, and 1642, when the theatres were closed by Parliament, were published. But no one could have known that this popular artist, writing for a local audience in a single city, would grow in reach and influence over four hundred years to become arguably the most celebrated writer of all time.