The Grand Opera House, York is to blow its doors open with a storm fuelled production of Shakespeare’s blasted tragedy King Lear. The Ambassador Theatre Group are presenting the tour with Bardic veteran Michael Pennington in the title role under the direction of Max Webster.
Pennington is a major star of the Shakespearean stage, having played many roles with the Royal and English Shakespeare Company such as Hamlet, Macbeth, Richard II and he recently played Lear at the Shakespeare Center in New York. He has a long and distinguished track record in classical theatre and is a fantastic speaker of verse.
Pennington is joined by 13 brilliant actors including Catherine Bailey playing Goneril, Sally Scott as Reagan, Beth Cooke as Cordelia and Pip Donaghy playing Gloucester.
Max Webster, who has previously directed other Shakespeare classics such as Much Ado About Nothing and Twelfth Night, is now leading a creative team for Royal & Derngate Northhampton’s new production of King Lear.
Webster is excited to be directing the production, especially with 2016 marking the 400th anniversary of Shakespeare’s death : “it’s thrilling to be directing one of his greatest tragedies.”
He feels privileged to be working with Pennington and such a quality cast : “to be working with Michael who is one of the most respected Shakespearean actors of our time. I look forward to our talented cast bringing a gripping new interpretation to audiences across the UK.”
This classic tale of an old king’s folly in giving away his kingdom before descending into madness is tragedy on a grand scale and one of the severest tests for any actor’s stagecraft. Follow Lear’s journey through the blasted heath as he battles the elements and his own sanity in what looks set to be a powerful and moving evening in the theatre.
King Lear will be playing in the Grand Opera House York from Monday 23rd till Saturday 28th of May.