Richard II at the Donmar Warehouse from December 2011

Posted: 26th September 2011

Around two hundred years after Richard II died, Shakespeare penned his celebrated historical tragedy charting the king's bitter feud with Henry Bolingbroke and the monarch's eventually usurping by Bolingbroke as King Henry IV.

It is one of Shakespeare's most famous works and the title role one of the most revered, and challenging, in the theatre. The work is the first in a four-part saga that follows Richard II with 'Henry IV' parts 1 and 2, and 'Henry V'.

Written around 1595, Richard II, or 'King Richard the Second' as Shakespeare titled it, includes some famous lines that still resonate over 400 years later. Not least of these is John of Gaunt's deathbed musings on his beloved homeland: "This royal throne of kings, this scepter'd isle… This fortress built by Nature for herself… This blessed plot, this earth, this realm, this England".

Stirring stuff, and it captures the lasting appeal of Richard II for audiences everywhere. This new production features Eddie Redmayne as the latest actor to take on the iconic, towering role of Richard. Redmayne won a Tony award in 2010 for his part in the play Red - also staged at the Donmar Warehouse.

Richard II runs at the Donmar Warehouse from 1st December 2011, now booking until 4th February 2012. Tickets are now limited, but you may be able to buy some from the Donmar Warehouse box office on: 0844 871 7624.

Stewart Darkin