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PLAY broadcast LIVE from the National Theatre
with encore screening
Tickets: Full £17 Adult conc £15 18 & under £9
Running time: 3 hours 45 minutes (including one interval)
(Length may vary on the night as this is a live performance)
Doors open: 6.20pm on Thursday, 2.20pm on Sunday
Academy Award® winner Sam Mendes (James Bond: Skyfall, American Beauty) returns to the National Theatre to direct Simon Russell Beale (Timon of Athens, Collaborators) in the title role of Shakespeare’s tragedy.
An aged king decides to divide his kingdom between his three daughters, according to which of them is most eloquent in praising him. His favourite, Cordelia, says nothing. Lear’s world descends into chaos.
[This production] is quite exceptional. It combines a cosmic scale with an intimate sense of detail and is neither imprisoned by an intellectual concept nor by an actor’s temperament. Instead you feel the director, Sam Mendes, and the Lear, Simon Russell Beale, are working with everyone else to explore every nook and cranny of the play…Russell Beale is a magnetic and unorthodox Lear. But his is only one of many fine performances that overturn expectation…Mendes’s production and Russell Beale’s performance sharpen our understanding of Shakespeare’s analysis of human folly and the primacy of contradictory feeling over calm rationality. Michael Billington, The Guardian
★★★★★ ‘Riveting. Simon Russell Beale is extraordinary.’ Daily Express
★★★★★ ‘Sam Mendes and Simon Russell Beale deliver an unforgettable collaboration.’ Metro
★★★★★ ‘Never ceases to astonish. Simon Russell Beale is at his best.’ Evening Standard
★★★★ ‘The cast is beyond superlative. A literally awe-inspiring production.’ Time Out