Shakespeare’s theatre uncovered
Archaeologists have begun detailed exploration work on the Curtain Theatre, one of William Shakespeare’s least well-known playhouses, in east London.
The playhouse, which saw the first performance of Henry V, is now at the centre of a new residential development, The Stage, offering experts from the Museum of London a rare chance to excavate a key cultural location.
The dig was officially launched by Ed Vaizey MP, Minister for Culture and the Digital Economy just days after the nation marked the 400th anniversary of the playwright’s death. Archaeologists have started digging through the 18th century remains that encase the Curtain Theatre and now they have reached key layers from the 16th and 17th centuries. Archeologist Heather Knight said: “We hope to find out more about the structure of the theatre which will give us a clearer indication of how Elizabethan playhouses were used and the evolution of theatre.”
From left, Cain Hoy Enterprises chief executive Jonathan Goldstein, Minister Ed Vaizey and archeologist Heather Knight