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News: Ian McKellen returns to Newcastle Theatre Royal


Ian McKellen returns to Newcastle Theatre Royal


Sir Ian McKellen is set to make a triumphant return to Newcastle Theatre Royal – once heralded as his favourite theatre – this summer in Player Kings with a limited run of four stunning performances only, from Wednesday 24 – Saturday 27 July 2024, to round off its UK tour.

Tickets for this epic production, which also stars Toheeb Jimoh (Ted Lasso; Romeo and Juliet) as Prince Harry and Richard Coyle (Ink; Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore) as King Henry IV, are expected to be in high demand when they go on sale next month.

Ian McKellen 'one of the world's greatest actors' (Times) - plays Falstaff in this new version of Shakespeare’s Henry IV, adapted by the award-winning writer and director Robert Icke, and said today, “Player Kings is a version of Shakespeare’s most English plays. So I am glad we are bringing our production across the country which they celebrate.”

Bringing together Shakespeare's two great history plays (Henry IV, parts 1 and 2), Player Kings will reign over London’s West End for twelve weeks only, before touring the country and closing the run of performances at Newcastle Theatre Royal in July 2024.

A divided country, leadership crumbling, corruption in the air. Welcome to England.

Hal wasn't born to be king. Only now, it seems, he will be. His father longs for him to leave behind his friends in the taverns of Eastcheap, most notably the infamous John Falstaff. War is on the horizon. But will Hal ever come good?

The cast comprises Ian McKellen as Sir John Falstaff, Toheeb Jimoh (Ted Lasso & Romeo and Juliet) as Prince Harry and Richard Coyle (Ink & Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore) as King Henry IV, with Raphael Akuwudike (Prince John), Sara Beharrell (Snare/Davy), Samuel Edward-Cook (Hotspur/Pistol), Geoffrey Freshwater (Bardolph), James Garnon (Worcester/Justice Silence), Alice Hayes (Messenger), Henry Jenkinson (Harcourt), Nigel Lister (Northumberland/Francis) Annette McLaughlin (Warwick), Mark Monero (Peto), Hywel Morgan (Sir Walter Blunt), Joseph Mydell (Lord Chief Justice), Clare Perkins (Mistress Quickly), Daniel Rabin (Poins), David Semark (Sir Richard Vernon), David Shelley (Sheriff), Robin Soans (Justice Shallow), Tafline Steen (Doll Tearsheet/Lady Percy) and Perry Williams (Douglas/Prince Thomas) completing the cast.

The production features Set and Costume designed by Hildegard Bechtler, Lighting by Lee Curran with Sound designed by Gareth Fry. The production Casting Director is Julia Horan CDG, Fight Director Kev McCurdy, and its Associate Costume Designer Johanna Coe. Hair and Make-up is designed by Susanna Peretz and the productions’ Associate Directors are Jack Bradfield and Lizzie Manwaring.

Player Kings is produced by Ambassador Theatre Group Productions, Gavin Kalin Productions, No Guarantees and David & Hannah Mirvish, Rupert Gavin & Mallory Factor Partnership, and Sayers & Sayers Productions.


Player Kings visits Newcastle Theatre Royal Wednesday 24 – Saturday 27 July 2024.

Tickets are expected to be extremely popular and will be on sale to Friends of Newcastle Theatre Royal from Wednesday 17 April, Groups and Schools from Tuesday 23 April, and on General sale from Thursday 25 April.

Memberships, giving patrons priority access to booking periods, along with discount on tickets, drinks, and the opportunity to attend exclusive ‘members-only’ events, can be purchased at , from the Theatre Royal Box Office on 0191 232 7010 or by emailing


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