When Did Shakespeare Construct the First Playhouse?


Quick Answer

The Red Lion, constructed in 1567 by John Brayne, was the first dedicated playhouse in England. In 1576, James Burbage partnered with Brayne to build the Theatre, the second permanent English playhouse. The Theatre saw far greater success than the Red Lion.

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Full Answer

In 1594, James Burbage's son, Richard, became the lead actor of the Lord Chamberlain's Men, a theatrical company which performed exclusively at the Theatre. That same year, William Shakespeare also joined the Lord Chamberlain's Men. In 1598, following a dispute with the playhouse's landlord, Richard Burbage and his brother dismantled the Theatre; they used wood from the Theatre to construct the Globe Theatre in 1599. Most of Shakespeare's greatest plays were written for the Globe, and the playhouse soon became synonymous with Shakespeare and the Lord Chamberlain's Men.

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