Anərkē Shakespeare presents Shakespeare's Tragedy of Richard II

Anərkē Shakespeare

~ sometimes I believe in as many as six impossible things before breakfast ~


Shakespeare’s Tragedy of Richard II

Tuesday 13 August - Saturday 17 August, 7.30pm and Sunday 18 August, 2.00pm
The Rose Playhouse, 56 Park Street, London, SE1 9AR
+44 (0)20 7261 9565
To buy tickets click here

From 13th-18th August The Rose Playhouse, Bankside hosts the return season of Anərkē Shakespeare’s The Tragedy of King Richard II (in association with the Centre for Global Shakespeare at Queen Mary University of London).

Anərkē Shakespeare is a new, innovative theatre company that combines creative practice with scholarly research, inspired by the working conditions in which Shakespeare conceived his plays. Shakespeare’s “myriad minded” text is brought to life by a diverse, gender-blind, actor-led ensemble in an intensively short rehearsal period, without a director!

Shakespeare would not have known what a theatrical director was. Early modern theatre was a process of joint decision making in a collective enterprise. The actors staged and performed the plays. Together.

Anərkē Shakespeare creates raw, fast-paced theatre: all discoveries and decisions are made on the floor by the actors in relationship to each other and the text without the imposition of a single conceptual vision. We are committed to changing the way theatre is created and received, sharing Shakespeare’s text in new and democratically accessible ways, to empower the audience’s own critical engagement.

This timely rendition of Richard II, with its warring internal factions, troubles over Ireland, anxiety to keep England ‘Great’ and crucial deposition of the king, reflects the unstable political machinations of our time, in the historical venue of the Rose Theatre, site of the first Elizabethan theatre on Bankside, London. Preserving the foundations of the early modern playhouse, it is a liminal space—a palimpsest of place and time, like the company and the production.

The audience, together with the cast, will work imagination to bring to life the Sceptred Isle of England, in this film noir, naked-framed perspective of RICHARD THE SECOND – Shakespeare’s poetic masterpiece: a play of mirrors, balanced and hinged, in repeated chiasmus—heroes and anti-heroes, solitariness and community, substance and shadow.

In the hollow crown of a King keeps death his court, and inside this emptiness we find ourselves, facing Richard in his mirror. A haunting, rendering of the insatiable desire for power, the fragility of family, the dangers of vain and self-conceit and the tension between solipsism and shared grief.