The Tempest opens Royal Shakespeare Company's new season
THERE will be a stormy start to the RSC’s new season when The Tempest opens next Thursday (26th January).
Directed by Elizabeth Freestone, the production promises an elemental tale of resource wars, revenge and renewal. Alex Kingston will return to the company to play Prospero alongside Offie award-winning actress Jessica Rhodes, who makes her RSC debut playing Miranda.
The production is designed by Tom Piper and features puppetry by Rachael Canning.
Alex first joined the Royal Shakespeare Company in the early 1990s, during which time she played the roles of Cordelia in King Lear, Hero in Much Ado About Nothing and Jaquenetta in Love’s Labour’s Lost.
As a stage actor, Alex has enjoyed major roles in the West End and on Broadway. These include Lady Millford in Luise Miller for the Donmar Warehouse and Nurse Ratched in One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest at The Garrick Theatre. In July 2013, she won critical acclaim playing Lady Macbeth, a role she later reprised for her New York stage debut at the Park Avenue Armory in June 2014.
Alex is best known to television viewers for her roles as Moll in The Fortunes and Misfortunes of Moll Flanders (1996), British surgeon Dr Elizabeth Corday in the long-running NBC medical drama ER, and for her role as Dr River Song in the BBC science-fiction series Doctor Who. More recently, Alex has appeared as Mrs Bennet in Lost in Austen (2008), Dinah Lance in Arrow (2013-2016), and Sarah Bishop in A Discovery of Witches (2018–present).
As a director, Elizabeth Freestone has staged work for the Royal Shakespeare Company, Manchester Royal Exchange, the Citizens Theatre Glasgow, the Young Vic and Shakespeare at the Tobacco Factory, amongst others.
Her previous work for the RSC includes The Rape of Lucrece, which premiered at the Swan Theatre in 2011 before playing at the Edinburgh International Festival in August 2012 and going on to tour internationally, Crooked Dances (2019), The Comedy of Errors and The Tragedy of Thomas Hobbes.
She is the former artistic director of Pentabus, a new work touring company bringing the contemporary rural world to new audiences in village halls, fields, festivals and theatres, described by The Telegraph as ‘one of the most important theatre companies in the country’.
In 2021, Elizabeth co-wrote 100 Plays To Save The World, a guide to one hundred brilliant plays addressing the climate crisis, with Jeanie O’Hare.
The Tempest runs from 26th January to 4th March. Tickets www.rsc.org.uk.