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Sean Holmes to become Associate Artistic Director at Shakespeare's Globe

Theatre news

AS WELL as casting for its Winter Season 2018 and its plans for a year-long cycle of history plays from February 2019, Shakespeare’s Globe has announced the Globe Associates and they will include Sean Holmes as Associate Artistic Director.

Michelle Terry, Artistic Director, said: “As the UK approaches its exit of the EU, our theatre will present a cycle of history plays, providing a unique opportunity to rediscover how Shakespeare perceived ‘this blessed plot, this earth, this realm, this England’. Richard II in this year’s Winter Season begins a year-long exploration of what our sceptered isle looks like now, presenting a journey through history via Henry IV, Henry V, Henry VI, and Richard III.

“I am so proud to announce my core team of Associate Artists who will help guide and deliver on the season, as well as support the development and continuing exploration of The Globe Ensemble. The Ensemble allows us to truly explore the DNA of Shakespeare’s plays, all of which were written bespoke for a company of players and made for the architecture of our unique play houses.

“Most of the artists have worked with us in some capacity this season and I am so excited to welcome Sean Holmes to the Globe family. Sean’s unprecedented experience on Secret Theatre will provide invaluable insight into a process and a practice that is so important to me and to the work that we are experimenting with at Shakespeare’s Globe.”

Sean Holmes said: “Michelle’s vision for the Globe is exciting, inclusive and bold – focused on the centrality of ensemble and the honest and open relationship between actors and audience that it engenders. It’s an honour and a privilege to be invited to join Michelle’s team and to help deliver this vision in all its surprising, dynamic and enjoyable glory.”

Sean Holmes recently announced his departure from the Lyric Hammersmith after almost a decade as Artistic Director and Joint Chief Executive. His tenure at the Lyric included programming game-changing shows such as Three Kingdoms, directing 22 productions, including the Olivier Award-winning Blasted, the world-wide hit Ghost Stories, the ground-breaking Secret Theatre project, and the first stage version of Bugsy Malone in over a decade.

He introduced Pantomime to the Lyric, and, through its ground-breaking work with young people, ensured the Lyric was accessible, welcoming and inclusive. Ticket prices remained affordable over his tenure, with a programme of Free First Nights welcoming more than 25,000 people living and working locally. Holmes also jointly oversaw the Lyric’s capital development project, beginning in 2012, reopening the theatre in 2015.

Artists joining Holmes as Associates will include: Athena Stevens, Brendan O’Hea, Federay Holmes, and Siân Williams, as well as all members of the Hamlet/As You Like It Ensemble: Catrin Aaron, Yarit D’Or, James Garnon, Colin Hurley, Bettrys Jones, Richard Katz, Jack Laskey, Deb Machin, Nadia Nadarajah, Mary O’Hanlon, Ellan Parry, Pearce Quigley, Shubham Saraf, Helen Schlesinger, Rob Walker, Elle While, and Tanika Yearwood.

Actor, writer, comedian, and director, Athena Stevens, who most recently wrote and starred in Schism (Finborough Theatre/Park Theatre), is also a spokesperson for the Women’s Equality Party.

Federay Holmes co-directed this year’s Hamlet and As You Like It, and most recently Sonnet Sunday. She also directed ‘Shakespeare in the Abbey’, a Globe co-production with Mark Rylance.

Brendan O’Hea has most recently directed this year’s touring shows The Taming of the Shrew, Twelfth Night and The Merchant of Venice. A director, actor, and education practitioner, O’Hea has previously performed in a number of productions at the Globe including Cymbeline (2015), Measure for Measure (2015), and Henry V (2012).

Choreographer Siân Williams has choreographed at the Globe for nearly two decades, including productions such as The Knight of the Burning Pestle, The Tempest, Globe to Globe Hamlet, and Twelfth Night, Richard III (West End, Broadway). Williams founded The Kosh dance theatre company with Michael Merwitzer and has performed in all its productions.