New Moves, New Voices
in Treading the bawds
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The playhouse in Lincoln's Inn Fields had reverted to its original use as an indoor tennis court following the move of the Duke's Company into its own purpose-built theatre in Dorset Gardens in 1674. The first task facing the rebels was to convert it once again into a playhouse, and Edward Langhans is the only theatre historian to note the significance of the fact that the ‘new’ theatre the company decided to occupy was in fact the first playhouse created by Davenant in 1660. Theatre historians agree that the strength of the new company lay in the fact that it contained the most experienced and popular players of the day. The most innovative aspect of this company is that it formed itself on the basis of a players' co-operative in which the actors and, for the first time, actresses were allocated shares. The sharing agreement made no attempt to designate any one player as overall leader or manager.

Treading the bawds

Actresses and playwrights on the Late-Stuart stage


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