Thursday, January 12, 2012

reminiscinces of london: the globe

my one class this semester is "english renaissance drama." if you recall, my specialty is not english renaissance drama. however, i have a love for such things, and the description of the course said it would be worth my time.

anyway. it is already proving to be interesting, especially since the other day we started talking about renaissance london and the experience of going to the theater. as brother young was describing the globe theater, from its thatched roof to its thrust stage and the yard where the groundlings would stand for the production, i was in london once again, with my great friends, having the time of my life.

when we were in london in the summer of 2009, we saw two plays at the globe: as you like it and troilus and cressida, both shakespeare, but of decidedly different quality. i shall tell you about them now, if you like.

we saw as you like it fairly soon after we arrived in london. we had a full day, including class and a trip to the falconry demonstration at the british library. so by the time we got to the globe i was already somewhat fatigued. therefore, i was skeptical (i maybe whined a little to myself) of standing for the duration of the play, as those with the cheapest tickets do. but i was (still am) determined to make london part of me, and this seemed the right way to do it. by some lucky circumstance, i was right up against the stage, which gave my legs some respite while also providing the best view of the action.

at one point, celia's blue dress brushed my head and it was one of the great moments in my life. basically, my first experience at the globe was magical, and i couldn't wait to go back.

one of my views during as you like it.

on our last weekend in london, we got tickets to another show at the globe, troilus and cressida. romeo and juliet, the other big show that summer, was sold out (disappointed), but we couldn't get enough of that renaissance feeling, so we went anyway. that friday morning, will, julianne, and i went to the globe exhibition, where you learn more about the history of the theater itself and the tradition of drama that emerged out of the period. we took a tour, led by one of the players, where we sat in one of the boxes and watched the stage crew setting up for helen of troy, an upcoming production. it was awesome and was a perfect thing to do on my last friday morning in london town.

that night we headed down to bankside once again for the performance. we had tried to figure out the plot of the play the night before, but the details were still a little hazy. it didn't get much clearer as the show progressed, but the atmosphere, being down in the yard right up against the stage, close to the other spectators, friends and strangers alike, was delightful. we joked about the ridiculousness that was troilus and cressida, i swooned over the cute actor who played one of the characters, whose name i can't quite recall now, and i chuckled at the airplanes that would occasionally pass by overhead.

this looks scandalous, which is maybe appropriate, because the play was rather scandalous. but i think (if i'm remembering correctly...) this is troilus and cressida  with cressida's uncle, pandarus.

what also made that night magical was meeting, rather fortuitously, two lds siblings on vacation, one recently returned from a mission and soon returning to byu, who were standing next to us during the show. we bonded at intermission and realized they weren't staying that far away from our flats. this of course led to frolicking over the millennium bridge, possible rapping and beatboxing of some sort, and revelry on the tube. altogether a lovely, lovely night.

all of this is to say that i miss london. still. everyday. i have so many amazing memories from those weeks in the summer of '09, and i will cherish them always.

and i'm thinking of buying some tickets to performances at the globe this summer. that way i have to go back to london, right? who wants to meet me to see taming of the shrew in july?

1 comment:

  1. very well written, I feel like I was right there with you. Wish I could make it this summer!