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News about Players-Shakespeare.com

For a niche web-site devoted to a minority interest subject (Shakespeare) the web-site is doing quite well. Over the last year traffic has grown ten-fold and there’s a growing feeling that although we have not yet achieved financial viability, there’s light at the end of the tunnel. This has led to us making a few changes which we think you  might like to know about. There are three main stories:

  • Caitlin Morris starts reviewing for Players-Shakespeare.com
  • Launch of The Globe production streaming support
  • Free Downloads now back up and running

Each of these stories is covered in more detail below:

Caitlin Morris starts reviewing for Players-Shakespeare.com:

We’re very pleased to welcome Caitlin Morris to the editorial team. Until now, the reviews and content  of the site has mostly come from one rather grumpy old man. You’ll be pleased to hear that we now have a young, enthusiastic, female reviewer as well. Follow the link to see her first review of The Globe’s production of Twelfth Night. We know that Caitlin will add a new dimension to our reviewing with a different style and approach to Shakespeare productions. Some variety at last!!!

Caitlin is a young actress, whom I had the privilege of directing in Twelfth Night in 2012 when she played Viola whilst still at school.  So her review of The Globe’s production is coloured by practical experience of the play. Joyce McMillan, the doyenne of Scottish reviewers, made Caitlin’s performance in Twelfth Night, “Performer of the week”  Since then, in the world of Shakespeare, Caitlin has gone on to play Cordelia in King Lear; Adriana in The Comedy of Errors; and this year she is playing Ophelia in Hamlet. This experience, her youthfulness, and enthusiasm makes her a real asset as a reviewer for Players-Shakespeare.com. You’ll be reading more of Caitlin’s reviews shortly.

By the way, you can see a short film that Caitlin made, using a Peel Tower in the Scottish Borders, and lots of Shakespeare’s words at: Love is merely a madness

Alan Brown starts reviewing for Players-Shakespeare.com:

We’re equally pleased to welcome Alan Brown to the editorial team. You can see Alan’s first review of  The Globe production of Henry V.   Alan comes to us  with considerable experience of reviewing, mostly in the Edinburgh Festival Fringe.

A career teacher of English, Alan spent seventeen years in inner London state schools and – following a move to Edinburgh – eighteen years in a private school. He retired in 2012. Played bit parts on the school stage, always – it seems – from Henry IV, the two parts of which began to blur after a while. Retreated to the lighting desk after falling off the stage as a headless ghost in a Christmas variety show. Have taken school pupils to see plays of all sorts on innumerable occasions. The last, appropriately enough, being Henry V at the Globe in June 2012.

Launch of The Globe production streaming help:

 A week or go or so, we discovered The Globe Player. That web-site allows you to stream Globe Productions (for a small fee of £4 / $6)  and other free content (Interviews with the Shakespeare great and good; The Sonnet Project from NYC) to your home onto a PC,  Smartphone, Tablet, or, perhaps most appropriately for Globe Productions, an Internet-enabled TV. (We do this by streaming a show to Chrome running on a PC, and then using Google ChromeCast to put sound and vision onto our TV. This works well for us. It does need a broadband connection to the internet.).

So you can snuggle up on the sofa at home, with some carry-out food (Fish and Chips in the UK; Salt Beef Bagel in New York; and goodness knows what in San Francisco), turn on the TV, and watch a Globe Production of your choice.

There’s only two questions left for you to solve:

  • Which show to watch?
  • How to get hold of the production?

Players-Shakespeare.com has launched a Globe Player Help Page which solves both these problems for you. First we publish reviews of these Globe Productions, rate them, and for each show provide you with ‘Our bottom line’ which tells you our view of whether the show is worth watching.  Secondly, Globe shows are available in a number of different ways. We tell you which channels are available for which shows. Have a look at Caitlin’s review of Twelfth Night or better still, go to the Globe Player Help Page, and clic on the pic of The Globe (Help with watching a Globe Shakespeare production wherever you are.) That will lead you to a summary of all the reviews we’ve published, and help with how to stream the shows to your home.

Not doing much this week-end?? Watch a Globe production at home!!!

 Free Downloads now back up and running:

As you’re probably aware, we offer free downloads of Shakespeare plays in our Modern First Folio Edition in a variety of formats (epub, azw3, pdf). (You can also purchase Castcards which help you run play-readings with your friends as a Play-reading Pack.)

We had a technical problem earlier in February when the mechanism we use to let you download these free versions of Shakespeare’s plays stopped working. We’ve now converted all the plays to use another mechanism which we use to support purchases of Playreading Packs, with one big difference. The purchase price is zero (i.e. they’re still free).

There are two main differences in the process from your point of view:

  • Before you can download the plays you have to give us your name and email address. As well as allowing you to download the selected plays online, we send you an email, with links to the downloads.
  • Secondly, you can mix and match purchases and free downloads, purchasing Playreading packs, and free downloads in the same order. Just click on as many purchase buttons as you like (they each turn into check-0ut buttons), and when you’ve ordered what you want, click on one of the check-out buttons and you’ll be taken to the purchase confirmation page, where you can still delete items from the order.
    You can pay for purchases by PayPal account or by credit-card.  Both payment types are handled by PayPal – we don’t want the responsibility of knowing your credit-card details.

However you plan to experience Shakespeare, Enjoy!!!

‘The Director’

Today we publish two Globe Player production Reviews:  Twelfth Night and Much Ado About Nothing

See Globe Player production reviews and other help at our Globe Player Help page or

Catch up with our latest stories and find out what we do on our Home Page




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