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Shakespeare’s Globe posts record £23m income

Farinelli and the King at Shakespeare’s Globe (2015). Photo: Simon Annand Farinelli and the King at Shakespeare’s Globe (2015). Photo: Simon Annand
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Shakespeare’s Globe has reported record income of £23 million in 2015, and has claimed audience numbers at its South Bank home account for 12% of all attendances at London theatres during the year.

More than 490,000 theatregoers attended a performance at the open-air theatre to help grow income by 4.6% despite 40% of the venue’s tickets costing just £5 – the same price bracket as when the Globe opened in 1997.

The company claims to have engaged with more than a million people during the year with its world tour of Hamlet playing to an average 94% audience capacity in the 140 countries it visited.

Its staging of Claire van Kampen’s Farinelli and the King, starring former artistic director Mark Rylance, saw a West End transfer to the Apollo Theatre and secured six of the 10 Olivier award nominations the Globe received during the year.

With 568 performances presented in the Globe Theatre, and the first full season in the candlelit Sam Wanamaker Playhouse, the company also saw a 6% increase in income from its education division, to almost £2 million. Income from other sources including catering, merchandising and recordings also saw growth, lifting 3% to £3.5 million.

Chief executive Neil Constable said: “In 18 years, Shakespeare’s Globe has established itself as an international player, reaching out as well as drawing people in. We continue to grow – the opening of the Sam Wanamaker Playhouse gives us a year-round theatre space – and our pioneering spirit continues to achieve firsts.”

He added: “We stayed committed to our principle of keeping 40% of tickets in the Globe Theatre at £5 so that Shakespeare performance, at its best and in the theatre for which he wrote, is accessible to all.”

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