Prince Charles reads Shakespeare's Hamlet alongside Sir Ian McKellen, David Tennant and Dame Judi Dench

'To be, or not to be - that is the question'

Jack Shepherd
Sunday 24 April 2016 10:08
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Prince Charles performs Hamlet on BBC Two

To celebrate the 400th anniversary of the death of William Shakespeare, thousands gathered in his hometown Stratford-Upon-Avon, including the Prince of Wales.

Having laid a wreath on the playwright’s grave earlier in the day, Prince Charles got involved with the day’s festivities, making a surprise appearance at Shakespeare Live!; a light-hearted tribute to Britain’s most famous writer,

Midway through a segment featuring Dame Judi Dench, Benedict Cumberbatch, and Sir Ian McKellen, the Heir Apparent crashed the stage and uttered one of Shakespeare’s most famous lines from Hamlet: “To be, or not to be - that is the question”.

The short contribution was part of a longer homage to the playwright, which also featured actors David Tennant, Tim Minchin, Harriet Walter, Rory Kinnear, and Paapa Essiedu, the Royal Shakespeare Company’s current Hamlet.

Prince Charles is the acting president of the RSC and reportedly rehearsed with Sir McKellen in the lead up to his big moment. Other performers at Shakespeare Live! included Al Murray, Helen Mirren and the dancers of the Royal Ballet.

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