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You’d think the title role was enough for anyone to tackle, but Michael Sheen, all wild hair and scruffy stubble, steals his father’s greatcoat from the grave and is possessed by his ghost in Ian Rickson’s high-concept production.

Elsinore is a secure psychiatric institution (a prison of buzzers and clanging metal doors, entered via convoluted corridors) where Sally Dexter’s nervy, clingy Gertrude fusses round the man in charge (James Clyde’s sharp-suited Claudius) as he slips her her medication.  

Vinette Robinson’s touching Ophelia dispenses pills, not herbs, as she, too, loses track of reality and, although not all the directorial innovations pay off,  Sheen’s volatile Hamlet is mesmerizing in his madness.

Young Vic, The Cut, SE1 8LZ
Tube: Southwark / Waterloo 
Until January 21
£10 - £29.50


Hamlet at the Young Vic
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