Archive by Author

How did they (seat a king) in Richard II

Looking at this picture of Jonathan Slinger as Richard II  you are struck by the richness of the image with the stairs doubling as a throne for the king. As Richard’s status declined Jonathan took his seat further down the staircase. Then as now height symbolizes power and status so that the figure of the king could […]

Continue Reading

Where did they (perform) The Comedy of Errors

We have only two records of a performance of The Comedy of Errors during Shakespeare’s working life the first was at the Gray’s Inn a treat perhaps for the barristers there which formed part of their Christmas revels.  What is interesting is how this highlights the transferable nature of Shakespeare’s plays and how he wrote […]

Continue Reading

How did they (create locations) in All’s Well That Ends Well

  All’s Well That Ends Well may seem like a simple enough play to stage. It is based upon exotic locations like The Tempest, and it does not require any elaborate representation of the outdoors like As You Like It or A Midsummer Night’s Dream might seem to. However you still need to create distinctive […]

Continue Reading

How did they (create a forest) in As You Like It

As you Like It is set partly in the court and partly in the forest of Arden or Ardennes (depending on who you listen to!) either way a forest then as now tends to have trees and dappled sunshine and leaves and other such things… The Forest of As You Like It has beauty and […]

Continue Reading

How did they (act) in Richard III

Richard III is a play centrally concerned with acting. If you have seen the play recently you may remember this short scene in which Richard (Gloucester) asks his villainous right hand man Buckingham if he is ready to act his part GLOUCESTER Come, cousin, canst thou quake, and change thy colour, Murder thy breath in […]

Continue Reading

How did they (kill a boy) in King John

The text of King John calls for the young Arthur, attempting to escape imprisonment, to jump from the battlements to the stones below ending his short life. In today’s theatre this scene can be almost too real with the lights lowered at the crucial moment so we don’t quite see, but know all too well, […]

Continue Reading

How did they (imprison Malvolio) in Twelfth Night

If you have seen the current RSC Twelfth Night, you will probably vividly remember poor Malvolio in his on stage prison. Although his dark cell was on the stage level the impression of it being in the basement was given by the other actors entering that space in an elevator from the gallery level.  When […]

Continue Reading

How did they (charge for entrance) in Julius Caesar

  So you want to go and visit the theatre? Think it might be a bit pricy to get the best seats, willing to save money by sitting further away? Or even behind a pillar? It was relatively cheap to visit the theatre in Shakespeare’s time. The cheapest seats (which were not seats but standing […]

Continue Reading

How did they (create stage blood) in Coriolanus

Here we see behind the scenes of a recent version of Coriolanus made for film – the write up that I took the image from  promises that ‘there will be blood!’ (and there certainly was). But was there on Shakespeare’s stage? You may think that blood was likely to be like the horses and the […]

Continue Reading

Download a free book written by Paul Edmondson and Stanley Wells about Shakespeare, Conspiracy & Authorship. Download the Book.


24 brilliant poems, inspired by Shakespeare's life and art, bound in an artisan stitched chapbook

get your copy now