MERELY THEATRE: A Genderblind Globe Is Coming Sooner Than You Think, And It Is In Balham

Merely Theatre is a genderblind Shakespeare rep company performing Twelfth Night and Romeo & Juliet in the Elizabethan-style Globe space at Theatre N16 in The Bedford, Balham on September 25-26.

London, United Kingdom - September 13, 2017 /MarketersMedia/ —

Michelle Terry has made headlines with her pledge for progressive casting choices at The Globe, SE1, but genderblind casting will arrive at The Globe, SW12 in just two weeks’ time. Merely Theatre will bring “Sweaty Shakespeare” to the Elizabethan-style Globe space at Theatre N16 in Balham, presented by a genderblind cast, providing a preview of what Shakespeare’s Globe might feel like when Terry takes control in April 2018.

The company will present two of the Bard’s best loved works, Twelfth Night and Romeo & Juliet. The company perform with only five actors, picked from a set of ten. Each track is double-cast with male and female ‘twins’, who play multiple characters of both genders. One twin is then selected for each performance, so the genders of the actors are fluidly jumbled.

In Shakespeare’s time, all actors were men, and played both male and female roles. The genderblind approach is simply a modern, inclusive extension of this Elizabethan practice.

At Theatre N16, Balham, this fluid mix has resulted in the second ever all-female performance from the company, of Romeo & Juliet. Twelfth Night will see a female Toby Belch and Andrew Aguecheek.

The genderblind approach is ‘old news’ to the company, who instead put their focus on energy, clarity and creating a real connection with the audience.

Artistic Director Scott Ellis explained, “We were thrilled to read about Michelle Terry’s policies for The Globe. We have toured the UK twice, proving it is possible to perform the plays as written, and tell their stories in vivid and imaginative ways, with a genderblind cast. We will demonstrate this to London audiences at the Theatre N16 shows, in a micro-machines Globe Theatre. Best of all, standing tickets are still £5!”

The company has been working in rep for years to develop a style that presents Shakespeare: Remastered. One of their most important principles is the obliteration of the fourth wall; the audience exists in the world of the play, shifting them from passive observers to active participants. The Balham Globe is therefore the perfect environment to present their work.

Sarah Peachey, an actor in the company, explained, “We put the audience first. As a cast of five we have to generate the energy of twenty, for and with the audience. This amazing atmosphere lifts the whole show to another level, especially in a space like the N16 Globe where the audience is all around you.”

The shows have received outstanding reviews:

Romeo and Juliet is, “Wonderful… it brought a new clarity to the text… a 90-minute production with laughs, high energy and heartbreak.” ***** Pocket Size

Twelfth Night is, “Unmissable! Hysterical and touching… Definitely no previous experience necessary to make sense of this production. An absolute treat.” ***** Everything Theatre

The shows can be booked through the Theatre N16 website.

About Merely Theatre: Merely Theatre create audience-focused ‘Sweaty Shakespeare’ with an emphasis on clarity, energy and invention. Their minimalist, genderblind, five-hand productions make classical texts feel fresh and relevant, creating palpable atmospheres through purposeful storytelling.

Contact Info:
Name: Robert Myles, Marketing & Comms, Merely Theatre
Organization: Merely Theatre
Address: Theatre N16, 77 Bedford Hill, SW12 9HD
Phone: 07989 387 048

Source URL:

For more information, please visit

Source: MarketersMedia

Release ID: 238841

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