Week by Week

Week 1

This week rehearsals began for this year’s Playing Shakespeare with Deutsche Bank production! Join us on our week by week journey as we follow the cast and creatives of The Merchant of Venice through rehearsals and into performance.

This week we spoke to Bill Buckhurst (Director) and Ollie Lindsey (Web Designer) about designing The Merchant of Venice – take a look below.

Week 1 Images

Racheal Ofori [Nerissa] and Christopher Knott [Duke, Old Gobbo and Tubal] at the meet and greet.

The cast, production team and Globe staff at the meet and greet on the first morning of rehearsals.

Bethan Cullinane [Jessica] at the meet and greet.

Nick Howard-Brown [Bassanio] makes notes before the read through on the first morning of rehearsals.

The cast and production team start the first read through of the Merchant of Venice

The character pages being built for the 2014 Playing Shakespeare with Deutsche Bank website.

Website developer and designer Ollie Lindsey discusses the new website design with the Globe’s digital team.

The cast warming up in rehearsals.

The cast limbers up for rehearsals.

Stretching before rehearsals.

Bethan Culliane [Jessica] enjoying rehearsals.

Stretching out.

The cast stretching for rehearsals.

The cast playing a game in rehearsals.

Christopher Knott is playing multiple roles as the Duke, Old Gobbo, & Tubal.

Racheal Ofori [Nerissa] enjoying rehearsals.

The cast playing a game in rehearsals.

Week 1 Blog

Friday 7th February

Our first week is almost complete! I’m sat in our rehearsal room stuffing my face with chocolate rolls, courtesy of Bubbles, our evidently brilliant stage manager. We are on our 4 o’clock tea break, and after a 4 hour movement session yesterday afternoon I can do with all the sugar I can get! My arms are throbbing from the push-ups, and I can’t look left, but I feel fantastic. I think we all do. We’ve only been in the same building for 5 days, but the work we’ve created has left me buzzing (and the chocolate rolls only account for 15% of that).

Best moment of the week was probably our Shylock’s arrival on Thursday afternoon. Ognen had been delayed in Macedonia and when he arrived everything seemed to fall into place! Even though he’d only landed a few hours before we went straight into our movement session, where every single member of the company threw some pretty impressive shapes! By the end of the session we had created an opening sequence to the show. Massive respect to our movement choreographer Georgina Lamb, I had no idea we had created that much material until she pieced it all together at the end! I don’t want to give too much away, so all I will say is this - imagine being inside an exclusive nightclub at 3am, where the richest of the rich throw themselves around to heavy house music.

It looks crazy!

We better get back to work now. Throughout the week we have been reading through the scenes and putting them into our own words. Today is pretty exciting because we are putting the scenes up on their feet for the first time. Our work has really paid off! Everybody seems to know exactly what they’re talking about. Occasionally I think they are still using their own words, when they are actually using the Shakespearean text! That’s what it’s all about. Back to it! The Merchant of Venice is a great story, and big, scary words are not going to get in the way… but these chocolate rolls might!

From Bethan in the rehearsal room

Tuesday 4 Feb, 11am

Rehearsals have begun! The week started with a ‘Meet & Greet’ to welcome all the actors and production team involved in this year’s project. The first thing done in rehearsals is to do a read through of the play, where everyone sits around one large table and reads their lines out loud. This means everyone involved can start to get a feel of what the play will be like. Cast member Bethan Cullinane will be blogging from the rehearsal room - look out for her updates here every week.

You can get involved with the project yourself by having a go at our Creative Brief tasks!

From The Digital Team

Creative Brief


A creative brief is given to each member of the creative team working on the Playing Shakespeare with Deutsche Bank project. The brief is intended to help them structure their ideas and keep a focus on the director's intended vision for the production. Why not be creative yourself by designing your own moodboard for the production using our creative brief...

Read More