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Shakespeare plays in London

Comedies, tragedies and histories – catch them all in the Bard's spiritual home

© Patrick BaldwinChristophe Grégoire

Whether you’re planning a trip to Shakespeare’s iconic Globe theatre or a spot of Shakespearean drama elsewhere in London, here’s where to watch the best plays by the Bard in London.

Shakespeare plays in London this month

As You Like It

3 out of 5 stars

Anybody expecting the Globe to become a chintzy Shakespeare museum, in the wake of the untimely end of Emma Rice’s boisterous regime, doesn’t know the Globe…

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Shakespeare's Globe , South Bank Wednesday May 23 2018 - Sunday August 26 2018

Hamlet

3 out of 5 stars

William Shakespeare’s existential revenge thriller ‘Hamlet’ has to be the most overthought play in human history…

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Shakespeare's Globe , South Bank Tuesday May 22 2018 - Sunday August 26 2018
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Macbeth

2 out of 5 stars

The National Theatre has just netted a stupendous 22 Olivier nominations, a massive haul that should by rights halt the persistent low-level mutterings about Rufus Norris’s leadership…

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National Theatre , South Bank Thursday May 31 2018 - Saturday June 23 2018

Shakespeare's Globe on Tour

Three Shakespeare plays are starting and finishing their tour of the country with a select few dates at the Globe. You can see 'Twelfth Night', 'The Taming of the Shrew' and 'The Merchant of Venice' on selected dates in May and September. Or opt for one of the 'voter's choice' performances, where the play you see is determined by audience ballot. 

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Shakespeare's Globe , South Bank Thursday September 6 2018 - Sunday September 9 2018
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Two Noble Kinsmen

Barrie Rutter – formerly of Northern Broadsides, and one of the few people in the Terry season to work with Emma Rice – tackles Shakespeare and John Fletcher's little-loved late romance 'Two Noble Kinsmen', which follows a brace of BFFs who allow a woman to come between them. Rutter promises us 'May Day capers' aplenty.

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Shakespeare's Globe , South Bank Friday May 25 2018 - Saturday June 30 2018

Shakespeare plays coming soon

Shakespeare in the Squares: As You Like It

Some of London's most gorgeous and rarified green spaces are playing host to Shakespeare this summer. Shakespeare in the Squares are back for a third year, and this time they're touring the bard's acerbic romcom 'As You Like It' round the capital. Director Tatty Hennessy's outdoor production will have a festival feel, inspired by '60s hippies and free-thinkers.

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Leinster Square Prince , Westbourne Wednesday June 20 2018 - Thursday July 12 2018

The Tempest

Every summer, Iris Theatre take over the blooming lovely gardens of St Paul's Church with a slate of outdoor shows. This year they're kicking things off with Shakespeare's 'The Tempest', a magical tale of finding love and getting drunk on a tropical island. Daniel Winder's promenade production is inspired by the pomp and luxury of 17th century court masques, and invites the audience to get their finest party gear on. 

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St Paul's Church, Covent Garden , Covent Garden Wednesday June 20 2018 - Saturday July 28 2018
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Shakespeare in the Squares: As You Like It

Some of London's most gorgeous and rarified green spaces are playing host to Shakespeare this summer. Shakespeare in the Squares are back for a third year, and this time they're touring the bard's acerbic romcom 'As You Like It' round the capital. Director Tatty Hennessy's outdoor production will have a festival feel, inspired by '60s hippies and free-thinkers.

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Leinster Square Prince , Westbourne Wednesday June 20 2018 - Thursday July 12 2018
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Othello (Globe)

Well this is undoubtedly a big deal: after sitting out Emma Rice's entire tenure (admittedly it wasn't very long), the Globe's talismanic former artistic director Mark Rylance returns to his old theatre to star as the villainous Iago in Shakespeare's great tragedy 'Othello'…

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Shakespeare's Globe , South Bank Friday July 20 2018 - Saturday October 13 2018
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As You Like It (Regent's Park)

Max Webster's family production of Twelfth Night was a brightly-coloured treat at the Open Air Theatre a few years back. Now the director returns with Shakespeare's forest-set romantic comedy 'As You Like It' – not a kids' version, but it should be big-hearted and accessible to all. 

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Regent's Park Open Air Theatre , Regent's Park Friday July 6 2018 - Saturday July 28 2018

Measure for Measure

In a production of Shakespeare’s dark moral satire so high concept it's somewhere in the ionosphere, stars Hayley Atwell and Jack Lowden will alternate the roles of puritanical deputy duke of Venice Angelo and his virtuous victim Isabella…

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Donmar Warehouse , Covent Garden Friday September 28 2018 - Saturday November 24 2018
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Twelfth Night

Kwame Kwei-Armah is kicking off his first season at the helm of the Young Vic with something he prepared earlier: a musical version of 'Twelfth Night' that premiered in New York, made with composer Shaina Taub.

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Young Vic , Southwark Tuesday October 2 2018 - Saturday November 17 2018

Macbeth

The National Theatre's recent dud of a ‘Macbeth’ has set the stage for a more robust 2018 production of the Scottish play. And the RSC has gladly obliged with this imposing-looking production from Polly Findlay, starring Christopher Eccleston in his RSC debut as murderous nobleman Macbeth, and Niamh Cusack as Lady M…

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Barbican Centre , Barbican Monday October 15 2018 - Friday January 18 2019
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Your vote: The top ten Shakespeare plays

The ten best Shakespeare plays of all time

To honour the 400th anniversary of the Bard's death, we asked you to rank all of his plays in order of greatness. Here's how the top ten turned out in the ultimate Shakespeare play-off

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By: Time Out London Theatre

A guide to Shakespeare's Globe

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