London Metropolitan Archives (LMA), 40 Northampton Road, London EC1R 0HB
Date: 9 September 2017
Cost: £30 including lunch
Led by: Dr Rebecca Bailey (Liverpool John Moores University) and Dr Eva Griffith (independent scholar & early theatre historian)
Organised to coincide with ‘Life on the London Stage’, an exhibition at the LMA, The First Playhouse in Drury Lane: a symposium on the Cockpit-Phoenix will mark the 400th anniversary year of a famous riot at this, the first playhouse in Drury Lane. The history of the ‘West End’ is variously told but rarely begins with consideration of the Cockpit, an indoor theatre built for Queen Anna’s men by their actor-manager Christopher Beeston. Despite obvious initial troubles, with Beeston renaming it ‘the Phoenix’ after the Shrovetide attack of 1617, this venue successfully produced drama from old repertoires while welcoming the new too – with Thomas Heywood as representative on the one hand and James Shirley on the other.
A performance element will be included on the day.
The programme will be available in June 2017.