The GoGlobal Blog

Weekend Update: September 7th

Weekend Update: September 7th

The week has absolutely flown by, and instead of giving you a minute to minute update of what went down this week, I’ll stick to the highlights.

Today was the first day of acting classes, which proved to be very exciting and incredibly stressful. I can already tell that my professors this term are no-nonsense people that have very high expectations. Even though they all have very high expectations, they are all still very nurturing people, and I can tell that they have a lot of great things to teach us.

Tuesday Night we went to go see The 39 Steps. This play has been running on the West End for a few years, and is based on a novel and Hitchcock film of the same name. It is a hilarious melodramatic farce where all of the characters in the story are played by the same 4 actors. It was a very fun show with a very talented cast.

Also fun fact about London theaters:
YOU DO NOT GET A PROGRAM FOR FREE. Anyone who knows me knows that I am hoarder of show programs, so obviously I was a little annoyed when they said that the programs cost £3.50, and I am a broke student.

After 2 long days of classes, I felt like I was in the middle of week 7 not week 1 today. I am so out of shape that it isn’t even funny. It has been a while since I have been in class for this many consecutive hours, but you gotta do what you gotta do.

This morning we took a walk and a tour of the remains of the Rose Theatre. The Rose Theatre pre-dates Shakespeare’s globe, and was where Marlowe’s Dr. Faustus and other plays were performed in addition to where some of the early Shakespeare plays made their debuts. When I heard that we were going to The Rose, I expected to see a building resembling the reconstructed Globe that is along the Thames, but no. Unfortunately all that remains of The Rose theatre is some of the original brick from the outer walls of the theatre and the stage. Due to changing hands and politics over the years, now an office building stands on top of where it is. A group of people have dedicated a great deal of time and money to preserve what is left, and now a small studio theatre operates just above where the ruins are.  Maybe I will get a chance to go and see a performance here.  In addition to seeing The Rose, our tour guide took us to where the original Globe once stood and past some historic inns that Shakespeare and his contemporaries would have visited

After my legs were sore from walking all morning on Thursday, it was time to take another walk! We took a walk from the reconstructed Globe which is just south of the Thames, across the Millennium Bridge, and then all the way to the West End theatre district. The purpose of the walking tour was to see how the theatre scene moved from central London, to being across the river, and to eventually being concentrated in what is now known as West London. The Globe was reconstructed in the late 1990s after archaeological digs at the sites of the original Rose and Globe theaters occurred. The reconstruction aimed to be as close to the original as possible (without violating fire codes). We did not go inside the Globe today, but we are seeing a production there in 2 weeks time, so stay tuned for updates on that.

After we were here we crossed the river to be greeted by St. Paul’s Cathedral and walked over to historic Fleet Street, where the famed barber Sweeney Todd had his barber shop. Although we didn’t find any pie shops, I did find a barber shop there. While here we walked and saw the Royal Courts of Justice and Prince Henry’s room (one of the few buildings to survive the fire of London in 1666). We also saw the Middle Temple and Temple Church which were both build by the Knights Templar.

The walk then concluded as we reached the outer edges of the West End theatre district. We saw the Theatre Royal Drury Lane which has been in existence since 1663. Now many of Broadway-style play houses exist here where one can find productions that are essentially the same as Broadway productions.

We went on a little adventure through London today! We decided that we were going to get tickets to see The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time, so we hopped on The Tube, and visited the TKTS stand in Leicester Square to get our tickets. The show was amazing! It was a great piece of contemporary theatre that had a great blend of spectacle and story. If you ever get the chance to see this show, I highly recommend seeing it. It was so great that I even paid £4 to buy a program. After this we went on an adventure to find leather gloves for our stage combat class for working with swords, and we got very lost in a very posh neighborhood, but we eventually found our way. We were not lost enough to find our way to happy hour at the local pub though.

This morning, David and I went on a run (more like walk-jog) through Kensington Gardens and Hyde Park. We have some homework to attend to as we prepare for another grueling week of classes. I hope you have enjoyed this weekend update. Over and out, y’all.

St. Paul's Cathedral as seen from the Millennium Bridge
St. Paul’s Cathedral as seen from the Millennium Bridge
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