The English Literature Society visits Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre

Our English Literature Society is run by students, for students. In June, the Society closed the year with a very special visit to Shakespeare’s Globe. Co-President Anne Johnstone (Class of 2018) reports on a memorable day.

On the 27th of June the English Literature Society travelled to London to see As You Like It at Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre. New director Michelle Terry is a long-standing actor on the Globe’s company and so it was interesting to see her step into the role of director, however this did not stop her from also acting in the performance, albeit in a small role. Terry has made a production which is fairly stripped down; the costumes range from modern day to period and there are minimal props or set in comparison with some earlier Globe productions. This simplicity enables the audience to enjoy the play as it is supposed to be: a group of actors enjoying acting out one of Shakespeare’s funnier works. Another interesting addition to the performance not previously done before at The Globe was deaf actor Nadia Nadarajah in the role of Celia. Nadarajah is fluent in eight languages, five sign languages and three written. The fact that much of the audience did not understand sign language absolutely did not affect the performance but in fact enhanced it. As Nadarajah is such an expressive actress her work enables the audience to focus more on what they are seeing rather than hearing, something which is important of a Shakespeare play. Indeed, as Shakespeare said, ‘Action is eloquence’. Overall this performance represented the play incredibly well, it was clear and very funny. An enjoyable trip and a fantastic way to end the year!

And very special thanks go to Anne, Charlie Gowans, Charlotte Cottenham, and Rose Wolfe-Emery for their leadership of the English Literature Society over the past few years, and to the whole class of 2018 for their inspiring contributions to the course.

Photos courtesy of Anne Johnston.

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