The Taming of the Shrew

Week by week

Week 5

It's Week 5, and the cast have moved out of the rehearsal room and onto the Globe stage for the final few days of rehearsals. This period is called the 'Technical Rehearsal', but the actors and creatives often call this 'Tech Week'. The technical rehearsal is lengthy as it will stop and start repeatedly. Over the next few days all the different parts of the production are brought together. During the weekend the production crew put up the set, and actors will get to rehearse in their costumes for the first time as well as using their performance props. All the sound cues are tested, and the stage management team will work to ensure the actors know their entrances and exits - especially important at the Globe when using the yard.

Week 5 Blog

"All the world's a stage..."


I mentioned it briefly in last week's blog, but the company have now entered their last week of preparation before the show opens to the public. This week is called the Technical Rehearsal. Or 'tech', as it's more commonly known. The tech is an exciting time as everything that you've been working on in the rehearsal room now gets put up on its feet on the stage. The cast get to see the set for the first time, costumes are worn and adjusted to the actors, the band set up their area on stage with all the weird and wonderful instruments that they'll be playing, and everybody gets settled into their dressing rooms backstage for what is set to be a pretty cold week to be working outdoors...

by Pieter Lawman (Assistant Director)



Alongside all of this, and most importantly, the Stage Management team get to work out how to run the show. This show is incredibly complicated backstage (even if it looks calm and collected onstage!). Helen, the deputy Stage Manager has been in rehearsals every day with the cast for the last four weeks and has written down everything that happens in the play in the 'prompt book'. Every move an actor makes, every time a prop is picked up, every entrance and exit is carefully noted down so it's not forgotten. A lot of the tech is given over to Stage Management so that they can translate all this information that Helen has collected onto the stage and make it flow as part of the production. 

by Pieter Lawman (Assistant Director)



Kev the fight director (remember him - the guy with the coolest job in the world?) comes back in for a session to make sure that the fights, so carefully choreographed in the rehearsal room, now look as exciting and realistic on the stage. After a little tweaking and reworking they're ready. The actors involved in the fights will run them every day before the show as part of their warm up to make sure they're safe and still look good. 

by Pieter Lawman (Assistant Director)



Sian the movement director is present for the whole of the tech. Of course Shakespeare is about language, but movement and physicality are as important in this production so Sian oversees everything to make sure the company are all looking good and feeling happy.

by Pieter Lawman (Assistant Director)



Essentially that's the essence of the tech. Does the play that we have created look as good on the stage as it did in the rehearsal room? That's the constant question. 90% of the time the answer is yes, but inevitably some things just don't work as well. For instance, at one point on day two of the tech we realised that one actor wouldn't be able to make their entrance in time as they were engaged in a quick costume change backstage. Olly the composer stepped in, quickly wrote out some music, and the band now play it as part of the scene change, covering the extra time needed by the actor before their entrance. You have to be on your toes on a tech. Ready to step in and help problem solve at a moment's notice. 

The production is looking great. But I'm afraid it's still lacking a little something. Oh yes... You. 


See you at the Globe. 

by Pieter Lawman (Assistant Director)

NEW BRIEF AVAILABLE – Design a Costume

A creative brief is given to each member of the creative team working on the project. It is intended to help them structure their ideas and keep a focus on the director's intended vision for the production. Why not be creative yourself and design your own costume for the production using our costume brief.

The designer for The Taming of the Shrew, Michael Pavelka, has been asked to design costumes for the production. To do this, he used a creative brief and talked with director Jacqueline Defferary about what themes are important to him in this production.

Why not have a go at the creative brief and design your own costumes for The Taming of the Shrew? Visit the Interviews page to hear some of Michael's ideas about the play, and you can also read some top tips for designing a costume below.

1. Be open initially to lots of different options, but remember you will need to focus in on specific ideas related to the character you are designing for. This could be to do with their age, gender, background, shape, height etc.

2. Don’t be afraid to reuse bits of old costume you’ve created in the past or have seen - but remember you’ll also need to think about how characters relate to each other and so view them not only as individuals but as a company.

3. The shape of a costume can be as important as the materials you use - something with good lines and fit can also signify an expensive outfit.

4. You need to make sure your drawing is really clear so that someone could actually make it. To help with this you should include notes describing what materials you will use and any other details.

5. Sometimes you might not be able to say everything about a character through their clothes - think about what accessories you could add to help with your character’s identity.

Now download the Costume Brief' and the male and female templates on the right. Once you are done email your creations to us at and we may feature it on the site.