A Headlong, Alexandra Palace and Bristol Old Vic co-production with Royal & Derngate, Northampton and Oxford Playhouse presents

Richard III

By William Shakespeare

“What do I fear? Myself?”

After decades of civil war, the nation hangs in the balance. Enter Richard, Duke of Gloucester, to change the course of history.

Richard was not born to be a king, but he’s set his sights on the crown. So begins his campaign of deceit, manipulation and violence – and he’s killing it.

Yet, behind his ambition lies a murderous desire to be loved.

★★★★★ “Anyone put off by the thought of a Shakespeare play should think again… This production is what live theatre is about; engaging, intense, drawing you in until the curtain drops, leaving you breathless.” – North West End

★★★★★ “The pace never lets up and the story-telling is plain and to the point… Bill the Bard would have recognised this [production] as being in the spirit of the play he wrote, I would think – and rather liked it.” – Theatre Reviews North

★★★★ “An exciting and vivid version of a classic play with a spellbinding central performance… Tom Mothersdale is a surprisingly vulnerable Richard III… It is a completely convincing portrayal.” – The Reviews Hub

“Headlong’s production delivers a hallucinogenic portrayal of Richard III’s mind, one that, much like insanity itself, descends slowly into pandemonium… The acting is phenomenal, and the set is equally as horrifying as it is brilliant.” – aAh magazine

“Tom Mothersdale’s constantly moving and twitching Richard revels in his evil deeds like the villain of a melodrama, constantly playing to the gallery with asides and looks.” – British Theatre Guide

“[Tom Mothersdale as] Richard is a sick blend of madness and hatred… Mothersdale’s unhinged performance anchors the play… His cruelty is riveting.” – Mancunian Matters

“Bold, energetic and unsettling… A darkly compelling study of a man’s pursuit of power and sovereignty… It is a portrait of vileness, in all its glory.” – She-Wolf Manchester

“A classy production, immensely enjoyable… Catch it while you can.” – Tom’s Travel blog

“Fantastic… Tom Mothersdale is magnificent as a charming, yet malevolent murderer.” – The Play’s The Thing

“A terrific production… There is blood and gore aplenty here.” – Jildy Sauce

“Tom Mothersdale delivers a Richard whose twisted body is as fluid as his nature is mercurial… A very fresh and timely revisiting of Richard III.” – Live Art Alive

“Headlong’s production of Richard III pulled no punches in staying true to this dark tale… Whatever the truth of this contorted monarch, in both character and body (or not), the entire outfit delivered a legendary performance.” – Honorary Manc

“This is the strongest production of Richard III that I have seen… Tom Mothersdale is magnificent as Shakespeare’s seductively sinister monarch.” – The Play’s The Thing

“I could give some glib and obvious parallels to current global politics, but frankly, there is no need: read what contemporary relevance you will into the play… It’s enough to just appreciate this meaty tragedy, cleverly and passionately executed.” – Reviewer Number 9

“If, like me, you are someone who takes a deep breath before going to see a Shakespeare play, then it is bonus to know how pacey this production is… [Tom] Mothersdale draws out every nuance, pause and inflection as he politics his way to power.” – Weekend Notes

“This majestic production also featured a compelling cast… Tom Mothersdale [is]magnificent in the iconic role of Richard III.” – Tameside Reporter

★★★★ “A superb performance, from a star in the making… [John] Haidar’s quicksilver production…stylishly staged.” – The Stage

★★★★ “[Tom] Mothersdale rules the stage… The focus on the man – including his vulnerabilities – is illuminating.” – The Times (behind paywall)

★★★★ “Tom Mothersdale’s murderous monarch reigns in Headlong’s thrilling production.” – Time Out

★★★★ “Sharp, intelligent… a speedy, focused, modern retelling from Headlong… An intimate portrait of a psychopath’s mental breakdown.” – Metro

★★★★ “Triumphant… A heart-stopping Richard III with a leading man to match.” – The Upcoming

★★★★ “An excellent production that fully exploits the dark humour of this extraordinary play… a great dramatic achievement.” – Londontheatre.co.uk

★★★★ “”Thrilling and dynamic.” – The Londonist

★★★★ “Electric and unnerving for an audience to behold.” – Bristol Evening Post

“Tom Mothersdale hypnotises as the unhinged overlord.” – The Guardian

“A propulsive, compelling evening.” – The Telegraph

“[Tom] Mothersdale is such a commanding actor, and this is one of those performances for which critics like to reserve words like ‘bravura’, ‘powerhouse’, and ‘tour-de-force’.” – Exeunt

Go behind the scenes of the production courtesy of The Guardian, and read five reasons to see the production courtesy of What’s On Stage.

Headlong return to HOME following People, Places and Things in 2017.

Want to find out more about Headlong Theatre? 

  • Running time: 2hrs 35mins (inc 20min interval)
  • Recommended age 12+
  • This production contains:
    Bloody scenes of violence
  • £10 – £24 full / conc. from £5
  • BSL Interpreted performance provided by Alex McDonald, Alexander Communications, on Thu 2 May, 19:30
  • Touch Tour provided by Anne Hornsby, Mind’s Eye Description, on Fri 3 May, 18:30
  • Audio Described performance provided by Anne Hornsby, Mind’s Eye Description, on Fri 3 May, 19:30
  • Caption Subtitled performance provided by John Reevell on Sat 4 May, 14:00