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Shakespeare North Playhouse unveil new historic addition to stage

11 months ago

Shakespeare North Playhouse unveil new historic addition to  stage
Credit: Shakespeare North Playhouse

This innovative addition promises to enrich the theatrical experience for audiences and actors alike, while further cementing the playhouse’s reputation as a premier destination for Shakespearean performances and historical exploration.  

Shakespeare North Playhouse, a beacon of cultural heritage and artistic excellence, is delighted to unveil their newly installed Frons Scenae as part of the reconstruction of the Cockpit-in-court Theatre stage which will be available to view from the 11 August 2023- 23 September 2023. 

The Frons Scenae, a term derived from ancient Roman theatre architecture, refers to the grand backdrop that frames the stage, encompassing the stage itself and the surrounding architectural elements. It’s a reconstruction of Inigo Jones Cockpit-in-Court Theatre and is, in essence, a ‘building within a building’ removing the traditional ‘backstage’ and transforming the on-stage space.

This installation in the Cockpit Theatre, nestled within the heart of the theatre, is the only other Frons Scenae in the UK outside of London, the other being situated in the Sam Wannamaker Playhouse in Shakespeare’s Globe. 

Credit: Shakespeare North Playhouse
Credit: Shakespeare North Playhouse

Audiences will be able to experience the newly installed frons in action during the theatre’s upcoming production of Macbeth (1 – 23 September 2023) a co-production with English Touring Theatre and Shakespeare North Playhouse. Theatre goers will also be able to see the production as part of the Shakespeare North Playhouse Guided Tours which run continuously throughout the year.

Crafted by a team of skilled artisans, designers, and architects, and erected by timber frame specialists McCurdy & Co, who built the reconstructed Shakespeare’s Globe in London, the Frons Scenae is a fusion of history and innovation. Shakespeare North Playhouse’s Frons is a bespoke design that accounts for the reconfiguration of the Cockpit Theatre and the transformative nature of the space.

Only in an end-on configuration can the frons be installed. Once Macbeth has finished its run at Shakespeare North Playhouse the Frons Scenae will be removed from the Cockpit Theatre and the space will be placed into its iconic in-the-round configuration in time for The Book of Will(19 October – 11 November). 

For more on Shakespeare North Playhouse and theatre in Liverpool click here.



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