The Tempest

The Tempest (2006) Patrick Stewart as Prospero and Mariah Gale as Miranda. Photo by Manuel Harlan © RSC

Shakespeare wrote The Tempest around 1610-1611.
Explore the links on the left to find out more about the play, and some of our previous productions.

Full synopsis
Read the story of The Tempest in plain English. If you don't want to know how it ends, don't read the last section!

Dating the play
Rebecca Brown explains how we know when Shakespeare wrote The Tempest.

Shakespeare's sources
There's no such thing as an original idea - even for Shakespeare. Rebecca Brown presents the historical sources and contemporary stories which influenced and inspired Shakespeare when he wrote The Tempest.

Stage history
From its first performances around 1600 up to modern TV and film productions, Rebecca Brown examines The Tempest in performance.

Production 2006
View video extracts and photos from Rupert Goold's production of The Tempest which featured Patrick Stewart as Prospero and John Light as Caliban.

Production 1993
View photos from this production of The Tempest directed by Sam Mendes and featuring Alec McCowan as Prospero and David Troughton as Caliban.

Production 1982
View photos from Ron Daniel's production of The Tempest which featured Derek Jacobi as Prospero and Bob Peck as Caliban.

Productions 1919 - 2006
Performance history expert Rebecca Brown describes a selection of our productions.

Resources for teachers
Extra resources for teaching on The Tempest: activities, synopses, themes and links to more from RSC Education.

Photo by Manuel Harlan shows Patrick Stewart as Prospero and Mariah Gale as Miranda in the RSC's 2006 production of The Tempest © RSC

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Teaching Shakespeare