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  • Print publication year: 2020
  • Online publication date: September 2020

Shakespeare Performances in England, 2019

Summary

This year provided the opportunity to see major productions of nearly all of Shakespeare’s history plays, most of them in London. My reviewing year started with Joe Hill-Gibbins’s cleverly truncated Richard II at the Almeida Theatre. The set, by Ultz, was a bare grey vault. As the play started, Simon Russell Beale’s Richard, clad in a plain black T-shirt, came downstage, explaining to the audience that ‘I have been studying how I may compare / This prison where I live unto the world” (5.5.1–2). The rest of the cast of eight stood behind him, facing the rear wall.