Shakespeare's Globe's season for summer 2003 will feature not just one all-male production but two - Richard II and Christopher Marlowe's Edward II. What's more, to counterbalance testosterone levels in the aptly titled "Season of Regime Change", two all-female productions will also be presented - Richard III and The Taming of the Shrew.

All four single-sex offerings are original practices productions - in other words, exploring the clothing, music, dance and settings that would have been possible at the original Globe in 1603. A fifth production of Marlowe's Dido, Queen of Carthage will, on the other hand, employ the modern practices of 2003.

The season opens with Richard II, running from 8 May to 27 September 2003. The production reunites director Tim Carroll with Globe artistic director Mark Rylance (who takes the title role) and Liam Brennan (as Henry Bolingbroke), who came together last summer in another all-male offering, the Theatregoers' Choice Award-nominated production of Twelfth Night, for which Rylance has also been nominated for Best Actor for his performance as Olivia.

Richard II is joined in the repertory from 25 May to 27 September 2003 by Richard III. In the all-female production, directed by Barry Kyle, Kathryn Hunter will play the monarch. Also an accomplished director, Hunter's many stage acting credits include Mother Courage, Spoonface Steinberg, Mr Puntila and His Man Matti and Far Away.

Dido, Queen of Carthage runs from 6 June to 18 August 2003, followed by Edward II, directed by Timothy Walker and starring Liam Brennan in the lead. The season is rounded off with Barry Kyle's all-female production of The Taming of the Shrew, running from 10 August to 28 September 2003.

Public booking for the season opens on 12 February 2003.

- by Terri Paddock