Shakespeare plays in London

Comedies, tragedies and histories – catch them all in the Bard's spiritual home
Twelfth Night, Young Vic 2018
© JOHAN PERSSON
By Time Out London Theatre |
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Whether you’re planning a trip to the iconic Shakespeare’s 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

Theatre, Shakespeare

Antony and Cleopatra

icon-location-pin National Theatre, South Bank
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There is a myth that Shakespeare plays pretty much run themselves on the National Theatre’s huge Olivier stage…

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‘Macbeth’ review

icon-location-pin Barbican Centre, Barbican
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Something wicked this way comes – it’s Shakespeare’s spookiest play, in an RSC production which really is dead good…

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Macbeth (Globe)

icon-location-pin Shakespeare's Globe, South Bank
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Shakespeare's supernatural chiller of ambition and madness opens the Winter season at the intimate, candelit Sam Wanamaker Playhouse at the Globe. 'Macbeth' is directed by Robert Hastie, following his pacy, well-reviewed take on 'Julius Caesar' at Sheffield Theatre, where he's artistic director. 

Theatre, Shakespeare

Romeo and Juliet

icon-location-pin Barbican Centre, Barbican
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The RSC’s new ‘Romeo and Juliet’ is almost impressively tone deaf. Styled as a modern-dress production about knife-happy teens, it transfers down to London at a time when youth stabbings in the capital are massive news…

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COMING SOON The Merry Wives of Windsor

icon-location-pin Barbican Centre, Barbican
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Shakespeare's silliest comedy was apparently written at the behest of old queen Bess, who was so taken with the character of Falstaff that she wanted a whole play about him. David Troughton will play the unlucky Falstaff, whose attempts to trick the rich widows of Windsor end in calamity after calamity. 

The Tragedy of Richard the Second, Simon Russell Beale, Almeida
© Nadav Kandar
Theatre, Drama

COMING SOON The Tragedy of King Richard the Second

icon-location-pin Almeida Theatre, Barnsbury
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After turning his hand to a stylish, flamboyantly weird take on 'Edward II' at the National Theatre in 2013, director Joe Hill-Gibbins is taking on another renaissance history play with homoerotic undertones. This time, acting legend Simon Russell Beale will star as a king who's power is coming under threat…

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COMING SOON Richard II

icon-location-pin Shakespeare's Globe, South Bank
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Adjoa Andoh and Lynette Linton are directing a cast of women of colour in a take on Shakespeare's 'Richard II' that focuses on ideas of Britishness. Following the anniversary of the Windrush arrivals, on the eve of Brexit, this production will tell the story of a king whose status is slipping away in a troubled nation. 

Theatre, Shakespeare

COMING SOON The Winter's Tale (Ages 8-12)

icon-location-pin National Theatre, South Bank
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Perdita is lost and found in the magical story 'The Winters Tale'. The NT has reworked Shakespeare's play for primary school audiences, with a team including new Unicorn Theatre artistic director Justin Audibert.

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COMING SOON Richard III

icon-location-pin Alexandra Palace, Muswell Hill
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If you’ve yet to venture out to Alexandra Palace’s newly-restored theatre venue, this seems like a pretty good excuse: visionary touring theatre company Headong drops by in March with a new production of Shakespeare’s dark history play. Tom Mothersdale will star as the eponymous tyrant in a production directed by Headlong associate John Haidar.

Theatre, Shakespeare

COMING SOON A Midsummer Night’s Dream

icon-location-pin Bridge Theatre, Bermondsey
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If the early days of Nicholas Hytner’s Bridge Theatre haven’t really been on a par with his National Theatre peak, then the clear highlight to date was his thrilling, immersive production of ‘Julius Caesar’, which showed he still knows his way around Shakespeare like few other British directors. Expect modern dress and a genuinely fresh take on the Bard’s undyingly popular comedy.

Your vote: The top ten Shakespeare plays

A guide to Shakespeare's Globe

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