Ian McKellen as Hamlet in 1971
It's a casting decision that goes against the precedent: Shakespeare's text suggests Hamlet is around 30. Previous productions have explored casting Hamlet as different races or genders, but this will be the first time the dithering Danish prince has been played by someone so seasoned.
Sean Mathias, who has worked with McKellen on No Man's Land and Waiting for Godot, will direct the new production of Hamlet. Rehearsals will be configured around social distancing, with temperature screening and increased hygiene measures.
'I feel lucky to be working again,' McKellen says, expressing excitement at the opportunity to 're-examine Hamlet, 50 years on from my first go.'
Hamlet isn't the only production McKellen will star in at the theatre. The stage giant is also stepping into the boots of Chekov's elderly manservant Firs in American dramatist Martin Sherman's new adaptation of The Cherry Orchard. McKellen will be joined on stage by Francesca Annis in the role of Ranevskaya and Jenny Seagrove as Gaev. Pioneering theatre practitioner Steven Berkoff is also due to star.
|Ian McKellen's Hamlet, Theatre Royal Windsor
|Theatre Royal Windsor , 32 Thames Street , Windsor , SL4 1PS | MAP
21 Jun 21 – 04 Sep 21, 7:30 PM – 10:00 PM
|£25 - £75
|Click here for more information and to book