owner/designer, Sally McLean, is an actor, writer, director and
producer for film, television and theatre.
Currently based in her native
Australia, Sally professionally trained as an actor at The Actors'
Institute in London, during which time she was handed the thesis
topic "Elizabethan Theatre".
Not being the strongest history
buff, she decided to begin her research with Shakespeare - as
most would, considering he is arguably the most famous Elizabethan
of them all - at least, from our modern perspective.
long, however, before she began to realise just how rich and
fascinating Elizabethan life as a whole truly was.
was further amplified when she discovered that The Globe Theatre
was being recreated on the site of The Rose Theatre at Southwark.
many hours watching the reconstruction of The Globe, being allowed
to enter the building while the final touches were being put
She watched with amazed interest as craftsmen and women
hand turned the balcony railings, thatched the roof and installed
the authentic-looking benches. She was privilaged enough to be able to
meet one of the architechts and learn of the debate over where
the stage columns should be placed, as well as learning from
an expert about the Elizabethan perceptions of the world as a
whole that dictated how a theatre should be built to reflect
that world perception.
Devils and bad spirits entered through the floor,
angels and good sprites and entities entered from above and ordinary
mortals entered from stage level. She learned about the audiences,
what a typical performance would have been like and even got
to hear some of the proposed Globe Theatre Company rehearse on
the stage in preparation for the Globe's Opening season.
with a better understanding of Elizabethan theatre and it's rich
vibrancy and creativity, she extended her research to other elements
of Elizabethan life. She visited the Bishop' of Winchesters private
prison, The Clink - now a tourist attraction, but actually part
of the original jail of the same name, built first by the Romans,
then adapted over the centuries and used extensively by the Elizabethans
for their criminals and poor.
When visiting The Clink and
the remains of Winchester Palace, she also learned about the
clergy, particularly the Bishops, and their questionable association
with the red light district that was Southwark - most interestingly
their ownership of several brothels!
She visited Southwark Cathedral
to see Shakespeare's memorial, went to the site of the White
Hart Inn, had a pint in The George Inn (the only remaining galleried
inn in London), visited the Tabard Inn and generally walked in
the steps of those who had gone before. Four hundred years before. Once the paper was completed (and the accompanying
presentation), with a most satisfactory pass, Sally's obsession
(and yes, it has become an obession!) with the Elizabethan period
did not wane. In fact, it became even stronger as she learned
more and more about this wonderfully eccentric, colourful, always
facinating period of English history.
Sally graduated drama school,
worked in London for a few more years, then returned to Australia.
She continues her acting career with roles in various television,
stage and film productions, but also found an interest in graphic
and web design ... which leads us neatly to the here and now.
Shoppe™ is an amalgamation of Sally's interest in all things
Elizabethan, the theatre and her new obsession - designing for
gifts and apparel.
We hope you enjoy your time here. Where possible,
Sally has tried to include information about each subject covered
and we are adding designs constantly to the collection, so check
you would like to know more about Sally's work as an actress
and writer, visit her official website: www.sallymclean.com