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The atmosphere of the famous Globe Theatre will be recreated and Big Little Theatre Company (BLTC) performers will push boundaries when they perform Shakespeare's Twelfth Night in Ashburton next month.
Three performances at Ashburton Trust Event Centre will feature an elaborate set design and a seating plan that would have been used back in the 1700s - and some top notch acting.
Having recently returned from an inspiring three weeks of theatre training at the Globe Theatre, London, and at other locations, BLTC actors are eager to bring the Globe experience to their home theatre.
Ashburton Trust Event Centre manager Roger Farr said he had been approached by BLTC director Jackie Heffernan with "the crazy idea of recreating the Globe'' within the venue.
"Having seen first hand the fun the audience had being in the 'groundling' (or pit) at the Globe Theatre, and after many discussions, it was decided that we too could do something similar here.''
Back in the day, the groundlings were generally made up of poorer audience members, who would pay one penny to stand in front of the stage.
Richer patrons would sit in the covered galleries, paying much more for their seats, Mr Farr said.
"Theatre etiquette was a lot more boisterous back then, with interjections being common in the groundlings area, which made for an entertaining affair.'Twelfth Night is a romantic comedy and features love triangles, disguise and cross dressing.
It tells the story of brother and sister twins, Viola and Sebastian, who are shipwrecked off the coast and separated.
Each presumes the other dead and Viola assumes the identity of a man to earn a living in the home of Duke Orsino, who she quickly falls in love with.
Twelfth Night is traditionally performed in the festive season. BLTC shows will be performed on November 22 and 23 at 7pm and on November 24 at 2pm.