The plays of Shakespeare during his lifetime were performed on stages in private theatres, provincial theatres, and playhouses. His plays were acted out in the yards of bawdy inns and in the great halls of the London inns of court. Although the Globe is certainly the most well known of all the Renaissance stages associated with Shakespeare and is rightfully the primary focus of discussion, a brief introduction to some of the other Elizabethan theatres of the time provides a more complete picture of the world in which Shakespeare lived and worked.
We can classify Elizabethan theatres into two main groups — those within the London district and those located throughout the English countryside. The theatres within the London district can be further classified as playhouses, inn yards, and private theatres, as you will see in the articles.