Shakespeare’s Globe will celebrate young love in its season next year, which includes three of the bard’s romances and a new version of Euripides’s Helen by Frank McGuinness.
Announcing the season, which is entitled Young Hearts, the Bankside venue’s Artistic Director Dominic Dromgoole said: “At Shakespeare’s Globe, each new performance feels like a new burst of energy and a new beginning. The 2009 season of Young Hearts celebrates the heedless joy of youth, a love of life and the enduring passion of our audience.”
Popular romantic tragedy Romeo And Juliet kicks off the season on Shakespeare’s birthday, 23 April (to 23 August), followed by comedy As You Like It (30 May to 10 October) and Greek/Trojan drama Troilus And Cressida (12 July to 20 September).
The Greek theme continues with the first new play of the season, McGuinness’s new version of Euripides’s strange, comic, fairytale-like romance, Helen (2 to 23 August), which marks the venue’s first foray into full-scale Greek drama. McGuinness’s vast back catalogue of work includes original plays Someone Who’ll Watch Over Me and There Came A Gypsy Riding, adaptations of work by Chekhov, Ibsen and Brecht and versions of Greek dramas Hecuba, Phaedra and Oedipus, which is currently playing at the National Theatre starring Ralph Fiennes.
The second premiere in the season is Trevor Griffiths’s A New World (29 August to 9 October), written to mark the 200th anniversary of the death of British revolutionary Thomas Paine. A moving and epic story, it charts the life and loves of Paine with songs, music and a carnival spirit. Playwright Griffiths’s previous work includes Comedians, Oi For England, Real Dreams, Piano, Thatcher’s Children and (co-written with Warren Beatty) the film Reds.
Joining next year’s line-up are two productions from the 2008 season. Ché Walker’s energetic The Frontline, set outside Camden tube station, returns from 5 to 23 May, while Dromgoole’s production of Shakespeare’s Love’s Labour’s Lost is resurrected from 25 September to 10 October prior to a planned US tour.
Continuing its commitment to touring, two new small-scale productions of The Comedy Of Errors and A Midsummer Night’s Dream will visit outdoor venues across the UK in the summer of 2009, with exact dates and venues to be announced.
Public booking for all productions opens on 14 February 2009. Casting and further details are yet to be announced.