Martin Parr directs a four-person ensemble cast in William Shakespeare’s famous play at the archaeological remains of the Elizabethan theatre from 5 February.
Jonathan Broadbent takes the role of Hamlet, while Suzanne Marie takes the double roles of Ophelia and Gertrude; Liam McKenna scores a theatrical first by playing both Claudius and Polonius; and Jamie Sheasby makes up the company.
The Rose was home to many of Shakespeare’s productions in their day. But the ruins have since provided the backdrop to a number of modern theatrical productions including Thomas Kyd’sThe Spanish Tragedy and Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet, also directed by Parr, last year.
The remains were only discovered in 1988 when building work for a new office block began. Sir Ian McKellen campaigned to ‘Save the Rose’ in 1989 along with other thespians, including Lord Olivier, Dame Peggy Ashcroft, Dustin Hoffman and Ralph Fiennes.
In November the theatre received a Heritage Lottery Fund development grant to help preserve the archaeological site ad build a visitor and performance centre. Plans are in place to complete the excavation and open it to the public permanently.