The Shakespeare and Fear Festival will run from the 31st October until the 9th November.

Filmed in the candle-lit Sam Wanamaker Playhouse, Shakespeare and Fear is the second digital festival and is set to open on the 31st October with Deep Night, Dark Night – a film of old, new and true ghost stories. It will include stories by from Edgar Allan-Poe and brand-new stories from Sami Ibrahim and Abi Zakarian. The new works have been created specifically for the Sam Wanamaker Playhouse and recorded in the space which has been set-up as a recording studio over this period of closure of the theatre.

The festival is set to then continue with Macbeth: A Conjuring, a staged reading of the Scottish play from the critically acclaimed 2018 ensemble, which starred Paul Ready and Michelle Terry in the titular roles. This will be the first time that a Shakespeare play has been spoken in the space since the theatre closed on 13th March. Released on Bonfire Night (5th November) the film will be available for seven days.

Meanwhile, on the 8th November In Conversation: Fear in our Moment will see some of our leading thinkers, artists and arts leaders including Professor Bridget Escolme (Professor of Theatre and Performance, Queen Mary University) and Stella Kanu (Executive Director at LIFT) explore questions of fear: fear of the pandemic, fear of the direction of politics, fear of recession, as we all find ways to bear with, and build with, our own political and social dreads.

Other events in the line up for the festival include Secrets of the Stage workshops will run on 31st October at 11am and 3pm. To celebrate Halloween, participants will join the Globe’s Head of Props and Head of Wigs & Make-Up for an online interactive workshop, learning about the spooky secrets of the Globe’s stages. Learning how to make stage blood, stage make-up, gooey eyeballs and more, participants will be sent a list of ‘around the home’ materials required in advance. 

The festival will conclude on the 9th November with Thinking through Crisis: Shakespeare and America will be examining the dynamic between Shakespeare and social justice, autocracy, race, fear and crisis. During the event, which will be held on Zoom, audience members will be able to send in questions for the panel. The event will also be available to watch later on the Globe’s YouTube channel.

Talking about the festival Michelle Terry, Artistic Director, said: “In 1605 there was a plague. Theatres in London were closed. In 1606 Shakespeare wrote Macbeth. There is not one mention of the plague in Macbeth, but fear is mentioned nearly fifty times. Shakespeare chose not to talk about the virus, but look instead at how dis-ease, doubts, fears and horrible imaginings can infect a mind, a country, a world, and how, out of chaos, instability and disorder, the crisis that emerges becomes an opportunity not only for ruthless ambition and terrorising confusion, but also a catalyst for hope, transformation and positive collective action. With Halloween, Bonfire Night, and the results of an election determining the future of the free world, there feels like no better time to be sharing these stories and having this conversation about the power of insurrection and the potential for resurrection.”

To find out more about the festival and whats on visit: https://www.shakespearesglobe.com/whats-on