Updated 2 June

Due to the continuing lockdown, alongside government advice that social distancing will need to remain in place for some time, we have made the difficult decision to postpone all remaining planned performances of The Winter’s Tale and The Comedy of Errors.

We are also postponing all other ticketed events scheduled to take place during the summer season, which was due to end on 3 October 2020. 

Planned performances in the autumn and winter have also been postponed or cancelled including:

  • The Wars of The Roses Part 1 and Part 2 - postponed from autumn 2020 until autumn 2021
  • Our new family musical The Magician’s Elephant - postponed from winter 2020 until winter 2021
  • The First Encounters with Shakespeare tour of Twelfth Night - postponed until 2021
  • Our Barbican annual residency for 2020 - cancelled
  • Matilda The Musical will remain closed in line with other West End theatres
  • All other events cancelled, including RSC Summer School

We are exploring the possibility of re-opening the Royal Shakespeare Theatre (RST) in the autumn with new events and re-scheduled performances of The Winter’s Tale and The Comedy of Errors.

Both productions were due to open in the RST this spring and further details will be announced over the coming months.

The ability to stage the productions in the autumn is dependent on government advice on social distancing and whether it is financially viable to open our theatres and perform to audiences.

Whilst physically closed to audiences and visitors, our extensive online performance, event and education activity. Find out more with Home Learning with the RSC and At Home with Shakespeare.


Our Box Office team is contacting everyone who has tickets booked for all performances up to 3 October 2020 to discuss their donation, credit or refund options. Owing to the volume of orders we need to process, we are contacting people in date order, in the week that they were due to attend a performance. We will therefore be in touch with you at the start of the week during which you were due to visit us.

If you have tickets booked for The Magician’s Elephant or The Wars of the Roses, the team will be in touch separately in the next few weeks detailing your exchange or refund options.

Please do not try and contact the Box Office at the moment; we promise we will be in touch with you as soon as we can.

Play video

Gregory Doran, RSC Artistic Director and Catherine Mallyon, RSC Executive Director, said:

“These are the most difficult times for all theatres and arts venues, whether big or small. It is incredibly sad to see our theatres and those of our partner theatres around the country closed at this time. We continue to do everything we can to bring them back to life as soon as possible, so we can welcome back our audiences to share the experience of live theatre with them. We can only do this when it is safe and when social distancing restrictions are lifted, making it financially viable for us to do so. Alongside our colleagues across the industry, we can and want to play a crucial role in the recovery of the country.

“We have had to terminate contracts and furlough 90% of employees, and we continue to explore every possibility to secure income from government schemes. We are grateful for the government support to date and for the continuing generosity of our donors and audiences, and we are asking people to consider donating to give us the best possible chance of reopening. To secure the future of the RSC for everyone we need financial support until we can start earning our own income again as our reserves will not last indefinitely.

“We’re in the process of rescheduling our 2020 Winter Season, moving it from this year to 2021, whilst hoping there may be a possibility of reopening this autumn in Stratford-upon-Avon in some form. This would ideally be with our delayed summer schedule. Sadly, moving our Summer Season means we have had to take the difficult decision to cancel our Barbican residency this autumn. We are sorry to be unable to share our work with London audiences in 2020 and look forward to returning to the Barbican with some exciting plans for our season there in 2021.

“Since we closed our doors, we have received support through messages and donations from the public, our audiences and supporters. We thank everybody for those messages of support. We are also grateful for the commitment and understanding of our staff, most of whom cannot be at work now. The hunger for the arts during the crisis is there for all to see.  Theatre and the arts give strength to people in difficult times, they lift the spirits and bring a sense of community, which is desperately needed right now. We are determined to be back with live performances, and we are looking forward to when that time comes.”


Keep Your RSC

The RSC is a charity and our mission is to transform lives through amazing experiences of Shakespeare and great theatre. If you can, please consider supporting us by making a donation and Keep Your RSC.




Contact us

Our phone lines are closed. If you were due to visit us, our Box Office team will be in touch to discuss your refund options. if you do need to get in touch with us, then please email tickets@rsc.org.uk.

Do you have more questions? Visit our main Contact Us and FAQs page.