Three classic Shakespeare plays coming to Prague’s Estates Theatre
Macbeth. via Prague Shakespeare Company

Three classic Shakespeare plays coming to Prague’s Estates Theatre

Prague Shakespeare Company presents three classic Shakespeare plays on three nights at the Estates Theatre. Macbeth is first on July 4, followed by King Lear on July 5 and The Tempest on July 6.

The plays are in English and will have Czech surtitles from the translation by Martin Hilský.

The plays will feature long-time PSC members along with participants from PSC’s Summer Shakespeare Intensive (SSI) training program.

PSC’s Guy Roberts stars as Macbeth in that play, and also directed and did the fight choreography. Roberts will appear in the upcoming 2020 historical action film Medieval (Jan Žižka), the most expensive Czech film ever made, in some of battle scenes, so he should know a bit about fighting.

Jessica Boone stars Lady Macbeth. She was in 2017 Michael Apted film Unlocked and the recent TV series Crossing Lines and Das Boot. She has also done voice work in animation.

Other PSC members in the cast include Jeff Smith, Scott Bellefeuille, Taylor Napier, John Poston, Vanessa Azyzah Gendron and Julie Gibson Josephson. SSI participants will play the chorus of witches.

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Macbeth is one of Shakespeare’s best-known and most preformed plays. PSC has presented it before, and their production focuses on some of the darker aspects of the historical tragedy of a man who kills his way to the top, only to be haunted by his actions.

King Lear is directed by Australian-based actor and director Kevin Hopkins, who has extensive experience on the stage in Melbourne as well as some film and TV appearances. Fellow Australian actor Peter Hosking, long a resident of Prague, appears as Lear.

The play, in which the king tries to divide his kingdom among his daughters, is considered by many to be Shakespeare’s greatest tragedy. It is based on the legend of an ancient Celtic king, and the lead role is one of the most sought after by actors, following that of Hamlet.

Hosking has appeared in films such as The Catcher Was a Spy (2018), Borg vs. McEnroe (2017) and the 2017 TV series Britannia. His acting experience goes back to 1979, and in 1988 he had a small role in A Cry in the Dark, starring Meryl Streep as a mother who says the classic line, “The dingo’s got my baby!”

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The Tempest, one of Shakespeare’s oddest plays, is directed by Carolyn Johnson, who has extensive theatrical experience from stages in Houston and Chicago. Fellow Houston actor Jim Johnson stars as Prospero. He has worked as a coach in dialects and accents, and has aided some top stars such as Hal Holbrook and Aidan Quinn.

The Tempest gave the English language phrases such as “brave new world,” “sea change,” “strange bedfellows” and “stuff that dreams are made of.”

For more information visit https://www.facebook.com/pragueshakespearecompany/

Raymond Johnston

Prague-based journalist with over three decades of media experience writing about culture, business, and travel. Folktale and legend expert, and avid photographer. Follow him on Instagram at @raymondjohnston4 or visit his blog magicbohemia.com.

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