Yesterday, JP and I were at the Globe theatre to see a production of Henry V. I spent almost as much time watching the enthralled audience and four pigeons on the stage roof as I did watching the actors who are close enough for their facial expressions to be seen quite clearly which makes it a very intimate atmosphere and I could almost be convinced that part of one speech was addressed to me personally!
The authentic narrow wooden benches, even with cushions, do not however, make for comfortable seating and after a very short space of time we were not the only ones squirming often, in an attempt to prevent rigor mortis setting in. I have never been so pleased to walk down, and then up several flights of stairs as I was during the interval! If you plan on going, hire two cushions apiece or take your own perhaps.
The easily identified stewards were plentiful and from our advantageous viewpoint I saw them frequently reprimanding both anyone caught taking a forbidden photograph during the performance and those who’d decided to have a sit down with their back against the first tier pit-side partition. I can understand why photography is forbidden but not the standing-only rule, especially on a warm sunny afternoon when the pit was not full. Conversely, unlike most theatres, the Globe doesn’t seem to object to anyone entering or leaving at any time during the performance.
JP and I thoroughly enjoyed the experience and would go more often if living more than a hundred miles from London didn’t make it a major operation. My in-laws were less enthusiastic about the Globe but that might have been due to the cramped seating conditions more than the play itself!
Afterwards, we had a meal at Rules, the oldest restaurant in London with an excellent variety of menu options for me as a coeliac diabetic. The food was good but not swooningly so, the service was efficient and the interior was interesting. We knew beforehand that it was likely to be an expensive meal but my eyes did still pop somewhat at the menu prices. We might need to take out a loan beforehand if we ever decide to go again…