For God's sake let us sit upon the ground
And tell sad stories of the death of kings...
For within the hollow crown
That rounds the mortal temples of a king
Keeps Death his court; and there the antic sits,
Scoffing his state and grinning at his pomp...
Not to be confused with the BBC’s series of Shakespeare’s history plays, The Hollow Crown is a compilation of (mostly non-Shakespearean) prose, poetry, songs, contemporary chronicles and diaries, spanning 1000 years from William the Conqueror to Queen Victoria. The legendary RSC director John Barton devised the piece in 1961 as a stop-gap production following the indisposition of Vanessa Redgrave, who was to appear in Hecuba. The Hollow Crown became one of the RSC’s most celebrated productions, and has been revived regularly.
Playgoers staged the piece in 1971, directed by Peter Clapham. Do get in touch if you remember that production!
Our early rehearsals have been interrupted by the second national lockdown, but we hope to resume working on the piece in December.