Follow Us on Twitter

Digital Theatre releases four Shakespeare Globe productions

Theatre news

TODAY (November 7, 2012), Digital Theatre expands its mission to make the best of British theatre available to the world, releasing four productions filmed by Shakespeare’s Globe during their 2010 Kings and Rogues season to a global audience as part of its new Digital Theatre Collections.

Recognising the performing arts as a great British export, Digital Theatre Collections brings the variety of content produced by some of the country’s leading producers and companies to Digital Theatre’s growing online audience.

This unique cultural service provides a platform for producers of quality content that has previously been recorded. Shakespeare’s Globe has been filming its theatre productions since 2009 and continues to create high quality material for the screen.

Digital Theatre Collections will form a catalogue of recent and contemporary theatre, opera, ballet and dance, with further announcements in the coming weeks and months.

Digital Theatre Collections harnesses Digital Theatre’s state of the art digital distribution platforms with productions available to watch online, download to your desktop or view through Digital Theatre’s recently launched App for Samsung Smart TV.

For the first time, Digital Theatre makes the Globe’s productions of The Merry Wives of Windsor, Henry IV Part 1, Henry IV Part 2 and Henry VIII available at the touch of a button. Recorded by the Globe during the 2010 season, the productions were broadcast to over 50 cinemas across the UK and 275 screens throughout the United States last year as part of the theatre’s Globe on Screen initiative.

The Globe’s 2010 season embraced some of the playwright’s most regal rogues and some of his most roguish kings.

Artistic Director Dominic Dromgoole’s acclaimed productions of Henry IV Parts 1 and 2 features an Olivier Award-winning performance from Roger Allam as Falstaff alongside Jamie Parker as Prince Hal. Widely considered to be the Bard’s masterpieces, the two history plays mark a turning point in his career, revealing new depths of storytelling and realism, and portraying a dramatic tale of family, treachery and war that surveys the entire panorama of English life.

This is a rare opportunity to see Henry VIII, famous in its own day as Shakespeare’s most sumptuous and spectacular play, and infrequently performed today. The 2010 production, directed by Mark Rosenblatt and featuring Dominic Rowan, Miranda Raison and Anthony Howell, is a gorgeous pageant of masques and royal ceremony.

With its physical gags, linguistic jokes and vivid characters, The Merry Wives of Windsor celebrates the foundations of the modern TV sitcom and features many characters from Henry IV Parts 1 and 2. Director Christopher Luscombe, once a Shakespeare comic actor himself, takes full advantage of this witty and affable play, creating a production full of irresistible charm.

The Globe revived its acclaimed 2008 production for a summer run at the Globe followed by an international tour to Los Angeles and New York, and further UK performances. Many of the 2008 cast returned including Christopher Benjamin as Falstaff, Serena Evans as Mistress Page, Sarah Woodward as Mistress Ford and Andrew Havill as Frank Ford.

Speaking about the launch of Digital Theatre Collections Robert Delamere, Co-Founder and CEO of Digital Theatre, said: “Through curating the live and recorded, Digital Theatre Collections sets out its stall as a trusted destination for quality arts and culture. The platform demonstrates Digital Theatre’s passion for bringing British culture, which is respected internationally, to a global audience.

“It is an honour to launch Digital Theatre Collections with Shakespeare’s Globe, an organisation with an absolute passion for the arts – demonstrated in each of their productions – and a theatre with a shared ambition for what world-class performing arts can accomplish.”

Chief Executive of Shakespeare’s Globe, Neil Constable, said: “We are delighted to be working alongside Digital Theatre Collections to bring these wonderful productions to a new global audience. For the first time, future generations of audiences can continue to enjoy our past performances through the Digital Theatre player streaming the films directly to their home as if they were watching them in our world famous theatre on Bankside.”