THE ROYAL SHAKESPEARE COMPANY AND CUNARD TAKE SHAKESPEARE TO THE HIGH SEAS
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The Royal Shakespeare Company (RSC) and Cunard will take Shakespeare and new work to the high seas in 2022, as they join forces in a new partnership to bring world class theatre to Cunard’s transatlantic stage.
Available exclusively on board Queen Mary 2, guests will be able to enjoy tailored theatrical performances by the RSC, including a new piece called Boundless as the Sea, a unique blend of Shakespeare’s iconic love scenes created by Owen Horsley from Shakespeare’s plays.
Guests travelling on a transatlantic crossing will also be able to experience the RSC’s new work through an abridged version of its acclaimed 2018 production of Miss Littlewood, a musical by Sam Kenyon exploring the life of Joan Littlewood, one of theatre’s most playful and radical figures.
For those interested in learning what it takes to be an RSC actor, the on board cast will lead a series of workshops that explore their craft. Guests will also be able to access ‘Shakespeare Tales’, intimate, informal events where the actors will perform their personal favourite sonnets and speeches, and answer questions from the audience.
In addition, Queen Mary 2 will host a touring exhibition, ‘Digital Diorama: An Augmented Journey Through Shakespeare’s Stratford’. Guests will use devices to experience scenes from his plays come to life before their eyes. Some of the RSC’s most popular productions in recent years including Hamlet, Henry V, The Merry Wives of Windsor and As You Like it will also be screened in Cunard’s on board cinema, Illuminations.
Erica Whyman, RSC Acting Artistic Director, said: “We are thrilled to be working with Cunard to bring our performances to the guests of Queen Mary 2 together with unique opportunities to get close to working theatre artists and learn more about our house playwright. The RSC ignites imaginations and expands horizons, and Shakespeare’s plays allow us to imagine new and remarkable worlds, so this partnership has a perfect synergy. Boundless as the Sea, which is what Juliet calls her love for Romeo, will be a heart-warming taster of all the ways Shakespeare explores love and romance, and we are also very pleased to be presenting a version of the joyous, quirky and toe-tapping Miss Littlewood. This is an exciting new venture for us, and we look forward very much to meeting new audiences on board.”
Lee Powell, Vice President, Brand and Product at Cunard, said: “We are delighted to welcome the Royal Shakespeare Company on board our flagship, Queen Mary 2. To be able to offer our guests access to performances by world leaders in both contemporary theatre and Shakespeare’s finest work, is an extraordinary opportunity which I know our guests will fully immerse themselves in.”
The 3-year partnership will begin on 29 May until 12 August 2022 and then again from 15 September to 13 November 2022 and will offer this bespoke programme exclusively to Cunard guests on Queen Mary 2 throughout these two periods. Guests will experience either Boundless as the Sea or Miss Littlewood on each featured voyage. Dates for future years to be announced at a later date.
For more information about Cunard’s transatlantic crossings please visit https://www.cunard.com/en-gb/cruise-destinations/transatlantic-cruises
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For further press information please contact:
Dean Asker, Senior Media Relations Officer, 0778 9937759, firstname.lastname@example.org
Notes to editors
The RSC is supported using public funding by Arts Council England
The RSC is generously supported by RSC America
The work of the RSC is supported by the Culture Recovery Fund
The RSC Acting Companies are generously supported by The Gatsby Charitable Foundation and The Kovner Foundation.
The Royal Shakespeare Company creates world class theatre, made in Stratford-upon-Avon and shared around the world, performing plays by Shakespeare and his contemporaries, as well as commissioning an exceptionally wide range of original work from contemporary writers. Our purpose is to ensure that Shakespeare is for everyone, and we do that by unlocking the power of his plays and of live performance, throughout the UK and across the world.
We believe everybody’s life is enriched by culture and creativity. We have trained generations of the very best theatre makers and we continue to nurture the talent of the future. Our transformative Learning Programmes reach over half a million young people and adults each year, and through our Placemaking and Public Programme we create projects with and for communities who have not historically engaged with our work. We are a leader in creative immersive technologies and digital development.
We have a proud record of innovation, diversity and excellence on stage and are determined to grasp the opportunity to become an even more inclusive, progressive, relevant and ambitious organisation.
We are committed to being a teaching and learning theatre – in which we create world class theatre for, with and by audiences and theatre makers of all ages. We provide training for emerging and established theatre makers and arts professionals, for teachers and for young people. We share learning formally and informally. We embed training and research across our company, work and processes.
We recognise the climate emergency and work hard to embed environmental sustainability into our operations, creative work and business practice, making a commitment to continually reduce our carbon footprint.
Keep Your RSC supports our mission to create theatre at its best, unlocking Shakespeare and transforming lives. Thousands of generous audience members, trusts and foundations and partners supported Keep Your RSC in 2020 and, alongside a £19.4 million loan from the Culture Recovery Fund, we are thrilled to be welcoming audiences back. It will take time to recover, to reopen all our theatres, and many years to repay the loan and the support and generosity of our audiences is more important than ever. Please donate at rsc.org.uk/donate
Cunard is a luxury British cruise line, renowned for creating unforgettable experiences around the world. Cunard has been a leading operator of passenger ships on the North Atlantic, since 1840, celebrating an incredible 181 years of operation. A pioneer in transatlantic journeys for generations, Cunard is world class. The Cunard experience is built on fine dining, hand-selected entertainment and outstanding service. From five-star restaurants and in-suite dining to inspiring guest speakers, the library and film screenings, every detail has been meticulously crafted to make the experience unforgettable. There are currently three Cunard ships, Queen Mary 2, Queen Elizabeth and Queen Victoria with destinations including Europe, the Caribbean, the Far East and Australia. In 2017, Cunard announced plans to add a fourth ship to its fleet. This investment is part of the company’s ambitious plans for the future of Cunard globally and will be the first time since 1998 that Cunard will have four ships in simultaneous service. Cunard is based at Carnival House in Southampton and has been owned since 1998 by Carnival Corporation & plc.