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The Hollow Crown

The Hollow Crownis a lavish series of filmed adaptations of four of Shakespeare’s most gripping history plays; Richard II, Henry IV, Part 1, Henry IV, Part 2 and Henry V that aired on Great Performances in September 2013.

 The films – chronicling a bloody tale of family, politics and power — tell the rise and fall of three Kings and how their destiny shaped English history. Richard II (Ben Whishaw) is a vain, self-indulgent man who rules with little regard for his people’s welfare. He is ultimately overthrown by his cousin Bolingbroke (Rory Kinnear), who ascends the throne as Henry IV (Jeremy Irons). Henry IV’s reign is marred by his own guilt over Richard’s death, civil war, and the gnawing fear that his son Hal (Tom Hiddleston) is a total wastrel unworthy of the throne. When Hal comes to the throne as Henry V he is left to bury the ghosts of his father’s past while fighting both the French forces as well as his own inner demons.

Shakespeare's “Richard II,” “Henry IV, Parts 1 and 2,” and “Henry V” stars a distinguished cast including Ben Whishaw, Jeremy Irons, Tom Hiddleston, Rory Kinnear, Simon Russell Beale, Michelle Dockery, and Patrick Stewart.

To enhance our audience's exploration of Shakespeare and promote support for local performing arts, PBS SoCaL is partnering with community Shakespeare organizations to share their information, events, and more. Please see the list below for Shakespeare organizations and resources in our community.

Shakespeare Uncovered Resources

  • Chapman University Department of Theater - Henry Kemp-Blair Shakespeare Festival
    The Henry Kemp-Blair Shakespeare Festival is an annual event hosted in February by Chapman University's Department of Theatre. All California high schools are invited to participate.

  • Independent Shakespeare Co.
    ISC serves the community through creating inspiring, accessible theater and bringing it to as wide an audience as possible. The Festival has grown to inlcude more than Shakespeare performances. Audiences enjoy pre-show performances by a variety of local artists, the Salon Series, and families can attend pre-show workshops about the plays.

  • Los Angeles Drama Club
    Los Angeles Drama Club is the country’s youngest Shakespeare Troupe. Despite this technological age, there still resides in us (and our children) a need to gather together, to make contact, and to express ourselves. Drama Club honors and celebrates that.

  • Los Angeles Women's Shakespeare Company
    The Los Angeles Women's Shakespeare Company (LAWSC) is a nonprofit organization which produces professional productions of Shakespeare's plays with an all-female ensemble.

  • Shakespeare By the Sea
    Shakespeare by the Sea's free summer festival has become a tradition for thousands of South Bay families. Including other programs, SBTS has brought quality entertainment to thousands of youth and their families, seniors and individuals in Southern California since 1998.

  • Shakespeare Center Los Angeles
    The Shakespeare Center of Los Angeles strives to enchant, enrich, and build community through professional theatrical traditions that are accessible to all.

  • Shakespeare In the Vines
    SITV's mission is to build and maintain a classical theatrical company of such excellence that it shall overflow its local boundaries, thus creating a renowned artistic center in the Temecula Valley.

  • Shakespeare Orange County
    Shakespeare Orange County is comprised of a professional company of actors, directors, designers, and craftspeople renowned for its commitment to producing quality theatre. Over a twenty one year producing history, the SOC family has been recognized with numerous awards.

  • Utah Shakespeare Festival
    The Utah Shakespeare Festival presents life-affirming classic and contemporary plays in repertory, with Shakespeare as our cornerstone. These plays are enhanced by interactive festival experiences which entertain, enrich, and educate.


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