Schools take part in world’s biggest Shakespeare lesson

Henry IV Pt 1

Children from all over the UK are set to be a part in the world’s biggest Shakespeare lesson when the Royal Shakespeare Company (RSC) streams Henry IV Parts I and II direct into classrooms up and down the country this summer.

The RSC’s school broadcasts series began last year with a stream of Richard II which reached over 31,000 students.

It made the RSC the first UK theatre to broadcast its work directly and free of charge into schools up and down the country.

As well as the opportunity to see the production in their own classrooms, the broadcast gave thousands of young people their first experiences of theatre, Shakespeare and the RSC.

The broadcast series is a major element of Young Shakespeare Nation, an initiative which aims to ensure future generations have unlimited opportunities to enjoy and be inspired by Shakespeare and the RSC’s work.

The RSC school broadcast series is made possible through a collaboration with Ravensbourne, a university college for emerging film-makers and platform designers.

Their brief has been to create an exciting, interactive platform from which students can watch Shakespeare in performance as well as post questions through.

In addition to the technology to stream the performance directly into classrooms and designing the broadcast website, Ravensbourne students also run the live studio from which the creative team at the heart of the production respond to student questions and comments in a Q&A session that takes place before and after the stream.

To register for the schools broadcasts – log on at

Jacqui O’Hanlon, the RSC’s Director of Education, said;

“We are delighted with the response to our school broadcast series and that our technology partnership with Ravensbourne is enabling us to reach schools, teachers and young people who might not ordinarily access our work.

“Young Shakespeare Nation is a new initiative that aims to give a whole new generation of young people more opportunities to enjoy the RSC and Shakespeare’s work.

Henry IV Part I will be broadcast into schools on June 6 with Henry IV Part II following on June 30.

The broadcast will be a filmed version of Gregory Doran’s stage productions of Henry IV Parts I and II which will play in repertoire in the Royal Shakespeare Theatre, Stratford-upon-Avon from March 18 – 6 September.

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