The 74th RSC Summer School is going online for 2021

Banner announcing 2021 Summer School


Monday 23 August – Friday 27 August

We are pleased to announce the return of our much loved RSC Summer School with a week long programme of online talks, sessions with actors, insights and provocations from theatre makers, academics and reviewers, all to be enjoyed from the comfort of your home. The week will explore RSC productions past and present, including gems from our archive, special insights into our summer season production of The Comedy of Errors and discussions of some of the questions we should be asking when we stage Shakespeare in a world of accelerated change. 

Each day will focus on a different play and include two streamed sessions as well as a ‘Green Room‘ discussion where summer schoolers can connect and reflect together. In addition, the week will include access to three full-length RSC productions that will be streamed specifically for summer school participants.

£180 for the week
£45 for a day ticket (see details below)

Summer School Schedule and Booking Day tickets

Below you can see the structure for the week of activities. The programme is subject to change, so do check back for more information closer to the time.

If you are not able to attend for the full week, there are day tickets available for Tuesday-Friday. Each day ticket will cost £45 and the Tuesday, Thursday and Friday tickets also give access to a filmed RSC production the night before.

Henry VI

On Monday night, bookers will have the chance to watch our full rehearsal room run through of Henry VI Part 1, recorded in June. On Tuesday, we will explore the play in depth, with guests including Guardian theatre critic Michael Billington, Mark Quartley, who played Henry VI in the recent production, and Katy Stephens, Queen Margaret from the 2007/8 production. The day will finish with a Green Room discussion over Zoom.

Challenging Shakespeare

The activities on Wednesday will include academic Dr Andy Kesson asking "How do you solve a problem like Shakespeare?" and a live webinar with panellists including director Iqbal Khan and Deputy Artistic Director Erica Whyman discussing, in a period of accelerated change, the relevance of Shakespeare’s work to our lives and world today. Bookers can then discuss the themes of the day in our Green Room conversation.

The Comedy of Errors

On Wednesday night, bookers will be able to watch a recording of Clifford Williams' 1964 production of The Comedy of Errors, with Diana Rigg and Janet Suzman. On Thursday, we then explore the play in depth with members of the current company and Professor Michael Dobson.

Richard III

On Thursday night, bookers will be able to watch the John Barton and Peter Hall 1964 production of Richard III, starring Ian Holm. On Friday, we will then look closely at the play, with guests including actors Pippa Nixon, Penny Downie, Jonathan Slinger and Aidan McArdle.

For an in-depth timetable of the week, with timings and full guest lists, please download our 2021 Summer School Schedule (PDF).

As this is an online event, you will need to be able to access films on Vimeo and join in with conversations on Zoom; read our technical FAQs to find out more. Further information can also be found on our Summer School FAQs page.

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